Story Time: I did everything in my power to avoid gaining the dreaded freshman fifteen when I went to college. I ate balanced meals, went to the gym multiple times a week, walked everywhere I went and even stopped drinking sugary drinks. Guess who still gained the freshman fifteen and then later, the graduate school seven.
What I wish I knew then that science supports now is the inexorable link between stress and weight gain. Spending twelve hours in the library trying not to cry during finals was just as bad for my overall metabolic health as eating a whole pizza the hour after finals were finally over. Which, I totally did not do…
So, let’s talk about stress and the complete chaos it causes in your life. Here’s the vicious cycle: Something stressful happens and you begin to worry. In order to handle it, you prioritize the issue over everything else in your life, sleep less, work more, find yourself hungrier than normal and end up making unhealthy food choices. Days later when you’re exhausted and still stressed out, you notice that you’ve gained weight and the cycle just goes on.
As we discussed in our article, Decoding Three Important Causes of Weight Gain, stress leads to a suppressed metabolism, fluid retention, poor food choices and a compromised immune system. Not to mention shifts in hormones that encourage your body to pack on weight. Check out the article to read a more in-depth breakdown of the science.
Now comes the important part:
How do we help prevent stress from causing weight gain?
Science to the rescue! The latest innovations in weight loss research provide helpful solutions geared to make losing weight easier to achieve and harder to reverse.
1. Cortidrenal-Slim™ Natural Stress Buster
Cortidrenal-Slim features a balanced combination of adaptogenic herbs which can help strengthen your body’s healthy response to stress while working to alleviate symptoms of fatigue and anxiousness. It is tailored to help the overstressed body and mind work toward their normal state of balance and resolve many of the biochemical changes that occur as a result of repeated, frequent exposure to stressors and increased stress hormones. Try Cortidrenal-Slim™ Natural Stress Buster today.
2. Color Block Your Phone
Lack of sleep is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to stress and weight gain. Oddly enough, one of the main causes of sleep issues comes from the temperature of light coming from our phones. Numerous apps exist now that filter out the cooler wavelengths of light that can excite our bodies into staying awake. Ideally we wouldn’t even be using our phones late at night but if you find yourself unable to put the devices down, using these apps can help encourage a healthy circadian rhythm.
3. Self-Care is A Necessity
Stress leads to a fight or flight response in our bodies that not only makes us feel terrible but it can suppress your metabolism and impact your weight loss. I grew up in a very mid-Western household and didn’t even know what self-care was until I went to college and found adult coloring books, massages, therapy and yoga. Things such as these are necessary for us to process stress in a healthy way and encourage our bodies not to hold onto it. Prolonged exposure to the physical impacts of stress can cause your body to encourage weight gain and begins to seep into all areas of your life. Take a deep breath, take a moment, do something you love and most importantly, acknowledge that you are feeling what you’re feeling.
4. Nutrition, Nutrition, Nutrition
It can be easy to dismiss the power food has over stress but have you seen those commercials about being “hangry”? Eating healthy, balanced meals provides us with the needed energy and nutrients to not only function but process effectively. A lot of terrible things can seem much more manageable when we aren’t exhausted from energy crashes.
From a scientific perspective, eating healthy nutrition also supplies the body with needed components to build healthy pathways and cell barriers in the brain. One of the common side effects of Vitamin D deficiencies is depression and new studies suggest that a deficiency negatively alters the way that the brain processes. More studies are needed to determine the exact mechanism but one thing is clear, vitamin D deficiency is associated with a 14% increase in depression in this meta-analysis breakdown of popular studies.
5. Well-Rested, Well-Prepared
The first thing stress likes to do is keep us up at night. And if you’re like me, you’ll stress about even the little things like “I can’t remember when my gym membership expires…” or “I forgot to get my tires rotated and my car is going to break down in protest”. You may laugh but we can all agree that stress, no matter how small the issue, can take hours off of our rest. And unfortunately, once we get into the cycle of poor sleep, stress feels worse, your metabolism slows down and it makes you more stressed. It’s a vicious cycle. Easier said than done but get some sleep, champ. Your health will thank you.
Need some help getting to sleep?
Relax-Repair™ Neurotransmitter & Hormone Support is a cherry-flavored powdered drink mix that promotes increased feelings of relaxation, restful sleep and protects the body from hormone related weight gain.