‘Stress and weight gain’ is one area of study that is increasingly gaining prominence and researches have proved that there is a link between them.
Recent findings on this are increasing awareness and helping people whose weight loss quest have failed over and over to regain hope of getting their figure back.
This stress induced weight gain is common among people in modern cities.
The traffic jam in a city like Lagos could kill an individual’s 4 hours daily and make the person inhale fume and dust.
These toxin alter the body hormones and would eventually result in stress.
Meanwhile, those who are in air-conditioned vehicles are not any better, as it also increases the stress that could result from sedentary lifestyle.
What Is Stress?
There are many definitions of stress, but we will stick to a simple one.
Stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances.
An important aspect hidden in that definition of stress is homeostasis.
Simply put, homeostasis is the complex and dynamic balance which substantially contributes to the maintenance of life.
Therefor, anything that threatens homeostasis could be considered as a major source of stress.
Sadly, the stress level for some persons in highly populated cities is consistently increasing.
Unknowingly, people confirm this level with the confessions they make.
They say things like: “I am so stressed.” “My job is killing me.” This job is stressful.” Sometimes people even describe it, with a label that says ‘hectic day’.
Asides traffic jam, stress may also occur as a result of trauma or other unforeseen circumstances.
It can be mild, temporary or chronic.
However, whether mild or temporary, stress is not anyone’s friend.
Stress And Weight Gain
This is because stress could result in increase in abdominal fat.
How To Lose Belly Fat After Child Birth may be helpful in your weight loss quest
Researchers have highlighted that stress could alter eating habit of individuals.
In essence, stress could lead to physical and emotional changes that drive individuals to eat more.
For some persons, craving for sweetened drinks and fattening comfort foods increases while they eat less nutritious foods.
In traffic, they can easily grab a bottle of sweetened drink and balance it with two sausages. Sometimes you do eat them. We know.
When they get home preparing a nutritious food to eat is often seen as stressful and time consuming. So, they avoid preparing them.
Furthermore, when stressed, people display a behavioral shift to a more westernised dietary pattern.
A study highlighted that stressed persons engage more in emotional overeating (buying sweetened drink because someone in the vehicle bought), over-consumption of high-fat, -salt, -sugar foods and less intake of fruits and vegetables.
What Are The Signs Of Stress?
Another 2018 study said stress had shown to cause physical, behavioral and psychological harm.
Some of these are headaches, constipation, smoking, alcohol abuse, poor diet, sleep disturbances and obesity.
You may also find our article on Lose Weight With 4 Simple Habits helpful
We have heard people say they do not eat, yet they are adding weight. This is a confirmation of what stress could do.
How To Reduce Stress And Lose Weight
The study found that proper stress management could result in weight loss.
Adults who were obese attended an 8-week stress management programme that gave them result. You can also apply this programme if you are stressed.
Twenty-two of the participants were in the intervention group and 23 in another group tagged; ‘control group’.
Some of the programme are diaphragmatic breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, guided visualisation and instructions about healthy nutrition/dietary habits.
At the end of the programme, participants in the intervention group achieved a significantly larger reduction in BMI compared to the control group (ΔBMI −3.1 vs. −1.74 kg/m2 respectively).
Anyone who is gaining weight without being sure of why it is happening should engage in this stress reduction programme and get this research-backed result.
Please, share with friends and loved ones to enable them know how best to overcome stress and that could cause weight gain.
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