When thinking about weight gain, most people say that they count calories and exercise regularly; yet they are still not losing weight. It is like their body has become resistant to weight loss. Even worse, despite their best efforts, they have gained a few pounds.
You see, stress is one of the last things people think about when it comes to weight gain.
However, most people believe stress is the traffic they fight on their way to work or the job they dislike, and even household chores and bills.
Yes, it is true; these concerns are stressful. Still, what most people do not recognize are the many physiological challenges that create a stress response in the body such as:
● Environmental toxins
● Poor quality of sleep
● Spinal misalignments
● Over exercising
● Chronic inflammation
● Food intolerances
● Eating too few calories
● Chronic pain
● Poor food choices
There are also numerous psychological stressors which may affect us such as:
● Lack of self-love
● Feeling low about your life
● Financial worries
● Body shaming (to yourself of course)
● Doing things, you do not want to do
● Bending over backwards to make sure everyone is happy
● Not speaking your truth
● Lack of self confidence
● Feeling lost
● Not following your heart’s desire
We are not immune to stress. It is a natural part of our lives; yet over time, stress can alter the way your body functions.
HOW DOES STRESS CAUSE WEIGHT GAIN?
I will admit, I am no stranger to weight gain due to stress. When I experienced chronic daily pain, I was deeply stressed. Every movement was exhausting!
I ate a very clean diet and even exercised up to an hour a day, despite the pain. Exercise and diet were not enough; I had to look at the stressors in my life. Yes, pain is stressful; but, the real cause of my body’s chronic stress and weight gain were my thoughts about that pain.
Chronic stress will wreak havoc on your body. It will deplete your cortisol levels and seriously affect your hormones. It is no wonder weight gain is an issue.
Check out what else stress does to your body.
● Raises blood sugar levels
● Seriously reduces the ability to burn fat
● Increases belly fat
● Reduces stomach acid
● Depletes sex hormones
● Reduces muscle mass
● Increases sugar cravings
● Saps energy
● Hair loss and hair thinning
● Insulin resistance
● Reduces progesterone, testosterone, DHEA
● Lowers thyroid hormones
● Inhibits detox pathways
● Insomnia and sleep issues
As you can see, stress seriously interferes with your metabolism.
WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT IT?
When I decided to do something about my weight gain, the mere thought of taking control again gave me peace of mind.
Here are my recommendations. Each one of them has helped me reduce stress and begin shedding pounds.
1. Deep Breathing and Meditation – This has been a big part of unwinding the stress and pain in my body. I like to focus on my breath for 20 minutes per day. It has been scientifically proven to lower your stress response and actually engage your parasympathetic healing response.
2. Neurolinguistic Programming – Neurolinguistic programming combines three things. The brain and your thoughts (neuro) which helps with the information that comes through your senses and is stored in your brain and body. The linguistic part deals with the words you choose to give meaning such as: negative thoughts or choice of words. The programming is the way you observe what you think and what you do to generate results. Essentially, it helps create a new you. If you change your thoughts, your body will follow.
3. Diet – A good diet is key to any weight loss and stress busting protocol.
Remove toxic foods from your diet because they are a source of stress to your body.
- Processed foods with several ingredients that you can't pronounce or know what they are
- White and brown sugar
- Grains: non-sprouted or non-fermented
Aim for a whole food diet and eat some protein and fat with each meal.
4. Exercise – Physical exercise is a great way to stress bust, but be mindful of how much you are doing. Too much exercise can work against you and actually create more stress hormones. If you feel tired after exercising, it is a good indicator that your adrenals are not ready for that much exercise. Instead, try a 30-minute walk and some resistance training. You do not have to work out in a gym to get fit.
5. Be in the Moment – Strive to be present in your life. Be here now and try not to worry about the past or future. In this moment, you are likely fine. When you do feel yourself in a stressful or negative thought pattern, focus on your breath and pull yourself into the present moment.
To find out more how you can crush stress and loss weight schedule an appointment with a qualified practitioner. They will also be able to advise you on suitable the right supplements for your body.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with me that can be done here