You have probably heard that stress and weight gain are closely related. In fact, many seem to believe that stress causes weight gain. But why? Is this from eating too much or due to hormonal reasons?
As it turns out, the cause of stress eating is actually both. According to Stress Management Made Simple: Effective Ways to Beat Stress for Better Health, stress increases levels of a hormone called cortisol, which in turn can increase deposits of fat around the abdomen.
“Studies have also shown that women under stress tend to pick less nutritious and higher calorie foods to eat. Plus, people under stress eat quickly, and when you eat quickly, you tend to eat more.
Taking time to enjoy your food is one way to decrease your stress. The meal can be a time to relax rather than just gorge and fill yourself up,” says Jay Winner, M.D., author of Stress Management Made Simple.
Meditation, yoga and exercise may help reduce stress, which means they may also help prevent weight gain from stress eating.