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Stress and Weight Gain

We all know the ill effects of stress. But perhaps we have limited knowledge of stress, if we believe that it can only result in hypertension and high blood pressure. It might surprise you to note that stress and weight gain are closely associated. To understand this in detail, you have to know what kind of impact stress has on our lives. Firstly, it helps in the release of several hormones which cause some serious changes in the way the body functions. These changes include increase in the rate of blood flow and alteration of metabolic rate. So, if you are under stress for prolonged periods of time and put on weight without changing your diet, chances are that your metabolism has slowed down. It has also been observed that people under constant stress tend to reach out for various types of artificial ‘stress relievers’ including junk food, smoking, alcohol etc.

There is a wide range of unhealthy foods which stressed people love to consume and these include foods with high fat content, processed foods and sugary beverages. Continued stressful living can also help the body to store fat usually around the waist and hip area. This not only helps you gain weight but your body contours also undergo massive changes. Fat accumulation around the waist area also results in serious health conditions including rising glucose levels in the blood, tiredness and lethargy. This in turn, makes you eat more. Of course diabetes and heart attacks are direct results of a stressful existence. If you are living under severe stress for a long time, you would see that you are continuously craving for some kind of food, even though it is not the meal time or even when you are not hungry. This is what makes stress and weight gain so closely related to each other.

This does not mean that stressed people who are facing weight problems have no ready solution. There are innumerable ways by which you can reduce stress in your life. Meditation, physical exercise and yoga are proven ways of stress reduction if not elimination. But then it is up to you what kind of quality of life you want for yourself!