Have you tried several diets and failed? Maybe even tried some exercise only to find you lose a little weight but it comes straight back again? Well don't worry! There's a reason for that and in this article I'll explain why it occurs, and how to combat it.Stress it not just a mental reaction but a physical condition. When placed under stress your body will produce adrenaline but it also secretes a hormone called Cortisol. This hormone is responsible for pumping energy in the form of sugar into the body to fuel the adrenalin rush. Stress is then a natural occuring function designed to help keep us alive and reactive to things going on in the world.
Unfortunately there is then a negative by-product if you are not using this energy. Stress in the modern world often takes the form of money worries, issues in the office, family problems and much more. The extra blood sugar that is being released has nowhere to go except settle around your stomach to be used later - as fat!Because of this many people are keeping or putting on weight without even realising it. Of course, there are other reasons, but stress is one that very few people talk about. Stress however needs to be controlled and fought against just as an unhealthy diet needs to be. It may be the one thing stopping you from losing the pounds you so desperately want to.
Stress and anxiety is in fact a double edged sword. Not only does it produce the excess blood sugars that turn to fat but it also encourages you to use food as a comfort tool. You may tuck into biscuits or fast food for that instant hit that is the culinary equivalent of a warm hug from a loved one.
Consuming these foods that are bad for you when you are stressed does not mean you are weak willed. You are just following your body's programming. Tests on rats have shown that under stress organisms naturally engage in pleasure seeking behaviour, in particular high calorie food.
Other tests have shown that men who only manage to get four hours sleep a night have on average a thirty seven percent higher level of Cortisol (the hormone that is responsible for energy - sugar) than those who get a full night's sleep. And what is one of the biggest reasons for insomnia? Stress!
On top of that it is important you have a good night's sleep when trying to lose the pounds because a deep sleep leads to higher secretions of a natural occurring hormone called Human Growth Hormone. This protects your muscle mass and it is muscle that helps to maintain a steady burning metabolism. We're not talking bodybuilder type muscle here either. Just the normal kind we all have.
Of course if you are already stressed the chances are you are not getting enough sleep already and so are caught in a vicious circle that is impacting your weight loss. Going to your doctor to ask about prescriptive sleeping tablets is one option, but should be used alongside a healthy lifestyle not in place of one. Fortunately, despite stress being the silent diet killer, there are some simple ways to combat] it.
Firstly with a little bit of exercise you can help yourself get an easier night's sleep which kills two birds with one stone. Just a fast walk every day will be enough for your body to fall to sleep naturally at the end of the day.
A hearty breakfast is also associated with lower stress levels. Skipping breakfast is just asking for trouble and will actually have a negative effect on your weight reduction. You need to eat breakfast to fuel your energy reserves. This will also manage your Cortisol levels. Cereal is especially good at this.
Fish, although not to everyone's liking, is another food that should be added to your diet to lower stress and therefore help weight loss. Oily fish especially are high in Omega 3. A tin of boneless sardines costs little and is delicious on toast. This alone contains a week's worth of Omega 3 which is perfect for your diet plan.
Finally learn to accept stress and use it. In other words make stress work for you. We all need a little stress to keep us on our toes and in this day and age it is everywhere. The trick is to put things into perspective and ask yourself "Are things really that bad?" There are sick children and sadness across the world and often we let every day issues stress us out when they needn't. Remember, combating stress with a healthy diet could just be the miracle weight loss cure you've been looking for.
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