Everyone experiences it and everyone copes in their own way. I’ve written before about the impact of stress and weight gain, but how much stress you experience and how you cope with it will directly affect your health and eating behaviors.
Stress has a direct correlation to the foods you crave and consume. It’s also one of your biggest contributors to excess fat, especially around your midsection.
Your best efforts at weight loss will be undermined if you are under high levels of stress.
So what happens in your body when it is stressed?
Changes occur in both the brain and the body that encourage weight gain during periods of stress. You may have heard of the “fight or flight” response that occurs when we are stressed. The brain signals the adrenal glads to release a hormone called cortisol that helps release sugar into the bloodstream, a slower metabolism and and increase in blood pressure…all to gain instant energy so you can well….either fight or flight.
So with constant levels of high stress resulting in a constant flow of cortisol you can predict the damaging effects it can have on your body: high blood sugar, slow metabolism, fat storage, weight gain, Adrenal Fatigue and even Heart Disease.
Let’s talk about ways you can minimize your stress so you can optimize your weight loss efforts and successfully reach your health and fitness goals.
Nutritional support for stress management. Did you know certain foods you crave can actually heighten the stress response? Foods such as candy, processed foods, coffee, alcohol and even higher starch grains can trigger those stress hormones to be released.
My favorite supplement for stress management is TLS ACTS which offers adrenal, cortisol, thyroid and stress support. TLS ACTS works best with Isotonix Activated B Complex whereas the ACTS helps to repair the damage and the B Complex helps improve adrenal fatigue. You can read why I love Isotonix vitamins here.
Foods that can alleviate the stress response are berries, green vegetables, turkey, sweet potatoes, avocados and nuts. Who knew!?
Other ways you can minimize stress:
- Identify your stressors or triggers
- Time Management- prioritize responsibilities and commitments and schedule your time accordingly. Plan ahead and be prepared to avoid unnecessary, sabotaging distractions.
- Go to bed at the same time every night. Your body needs sleep for recovery and repair. Lack of sleeps also plays a direct role in the release of cortisol
- Stay focused on your goals.
- Get in a support group for the accountability and encouragement.
Participate in stress reducing activities:
- Exercise of course! Walking or spend time outside for some good ‘ole Vitamin D!
- Journal. This is a favorite! Journalling is a great way to not only track your food and your mood, but also your progress and those stress triggers that could be derailing you!
- Take long baths. In spite of having a toddler and preschooler, I always took long baths. Yep, locked the door and everything! 🙂 (No, they weren’t home alone, the hubby was always home and in charge! lol)
- Meditation and prayer
- Play! Yes, play with the kids or the dogs. Laughter can sometimes be the best medicine!
When I talk to my clients, about 95% of them answer “yes” that they are under stress. It’s real my friends and can contribute to many underlying health issues you may not be aware of. The key is realizing it and getting ahead of it. More seriously, I’ve seen too many of my peeps suffer from Adrenal Fatigue.
Adrenal Fatigue occurs when the adrenal glands aren’t capable of product the healthy amounts of hormones our body needs. When exposed to prolongs stress, the adrenals simply cannot keep up. People suffering from adrenal fatigue can feel like they are on an energy roller coaster going from exhaustion to energized and back to exhaustion again within a few hours.
The only way to send the correct signals to your body so is to lower your stress burden, change your response to stress and give your adrenals more support.
I hope this helps my friend! What are some of your own ways of coping with stress?
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product(s) is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease
** As always, check with your doctor or healthcare professional prior to taking on a supplement regimen or testing products to treat medical conditions. We are not health care professionals – this is for informational purposes only and does not override professional medical advice.