De-stress to Lose Weight

The issues surrounding obesity and weight loss are many faceted. There is no single reason why somebody is overweight or obese any more than there is a single reason why they find it almost impossible to lose weight successfully.

One of the least recognised reasons for the above is that of stress. Most people would deny that they are stressed, mainly because they don’t really understand what stress is. Stress can creep up on you unannounced and suddenly you find yourself in its grips.

Being stressed is not a matter of having panic attacks or feeling out of control. Stress can be a simple as trying to keep lots of balls in the air. Perhaps you have a family, a job and a sick parent to look after. For some people this can be very difficult to manage. You may think you are coping really well but there will also be times when you realise that it is taking its toll.

Constant chronic stress triggers a hormone called cortisol in your body. Cortisol is often referred to as the stress hormone because your adrenal glands start pumping it out when you’re under stress. On a good day cortisol helps to regulate blood pressure, cardiovascular function and metabolism. But when stress levels rise and then stay there, your body is flooded with cortisol constantly. As a result your immune system suffers, your blood pressure rises and your belly gets fatter and fatter.

One of the main reason why this happens is that cortisol stimulates your appetite and your body starts to store fat. This fat is stored in your belly as your belly loves cortisol. So it makes sense that no weight loss regime is likely to work if you don’t reduce your stress and cortisol levels first.

So what are the signs of a stressful life? Well a good example is chronic back pain or neck pain. Another symptom is often digestive problems, which can also make fat loss more difficult

However there is no need to despair. The good news is that stress induced belly fat is not that difficult to lose. Just reduce your stress a little bit and weight loss will start to happen very quickly. Relaxation exercises can be very helpful in reducing stress as can simple meditation. It is about allowing yourself to be a “human being” not a “human doing”

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