How to Manage Stress and Lose Weight Here are 3 benefits to better health, rejuvenation and weight loss when dealing with stress. BY LOUISA GRAVES
The more you're stressed the more your body begins to work against you.
“ Take a quiet 10-15 minute walk by yourself each day. Walking is a scientifically proven stress buster.”
Our bodies respond to our thoughts and feelings. When we’re feeling down our bodies become tired and sometimes even sick. When we feel positive, our bodies are healthier; we become uplifted, more energized and enthusiastic about life. If you have a hectic lifestyle or occupation, here are life-changing tips that can help you feel less stressed, more energized and rejuvenated.
The Stress, Weight Gain & Brain Fog Connection
Living in a constant state of stress not only rapidly ages us, but it also affects our health and hormones, impairs memory, and causes weight gain. Continuous stress causes the body to naturally release a hormone called cortisol. As stress prolongs we experience brain fog, irritability and sadness, as well as additional inches of fat on the waist, hips and thighs. This can be devastating for many women.
Our stress hormone, cortisol, provides energy. When produced in excess, cortisol blocks the thyroid hormone, which regulates how quickly we burn calories. This hinders weight loss, increases belly fat, water retention and cravings for high-carbohydrate foods, such as sweets and starchy foods. These high glycemic and caloric comfort foods stimulate our endorphins (feel-good transmitters) in the brain, providing a temporary high that calms us for a short time.
However, high-carb foods enter the blood stream quickly and cause blood sugar spikes that stimulate the production of insulin. When insulin levels rise, the body’s ability to burn fat slows down. As this cycle continues, the pancreas eventually stops producing the correct supply of insulin the body requires, which can lead to diabetes. In addition, sugar and high-carbohydrate foods cause inflammation and aged-looking skin, low energy, sore joints and even some diseases.
Continued stress exhausts the adrenal system, leading to a variety of health concerns such as depression, fatigue, thyroid issues, brain fog, panic attacks, irritability, low libido, restlessness, weight gain and more. Please visit your doctor if experiencing these symptoms.
Reading E-mails Increases Stress and Our Waistlines
Did you know that reading e-mails increases stress? One study revealed that the anticipation of what’s in an e-mail causes cortisol production to rise. In addition, those annoying unsolicited e-mailed advertisements prey on our fears, increasing anxiety even further.
Everywhere we look someone is texting, tweeting, e-mailing or phoning someone else. I’ve witnessed ‘texters’ causing traffic accidents and bumping into others. One gal even tripped and fell into a mall fountain while texting and walking!
Electronic Devices and the Weight Gain Connection
The reality is that to do our jobs many of us must rely on phones, computers and other electronic devices. But the sad truth is that when we’re "on" for countless hours a day, our bodies spew out cortisol. This can drain the adrenal system, cause anxiety, sleeplessness, over eating, and cravings for junk food, which affects our wellbeing and increases our waistlines.
Given the ever-increasing rise in obesity rates I often wonder if using electronic devices are another cause of this skyrocketing phenomenon. Read the alarming obesity statistic below. It’s something to think about.
It’s a fact that in the U.S., adult obesity rates increased in 16 states during the past year and none of the 50 states showed any decline in their rates of obesity, according to a study done by Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, two non-partisan organizations as part of the F as in Fat project, which strives to raise awareness about the seriousness of the obesity epidemic. Even scarier, 41 states have an adult obesity rate of 25% or higher.
If your job requires communicating via e-mail or phone, take two moments each hour of the day to reset yourself back to calm mode. I also recommend that if you have a high-stress schedule, begin your day with meditation.
In addition, set boundaries while away from work. Turn your cell phone off during lunch. Take a quiet 10-15 minute walk by yourself each day. Walking is a scientifically proven stress buster.
Consider turning your computer and phones off after 7:00 p.m. Time away from work is your time. Calm your mind, nourish your body and just be. This will result in a more focused, healthier and rejuvenated you.
Louisa Graves has appeared on myriad national television shows including The Talk, Extra, and The Doctors, and has been a beauty expert on over 500 terrestrial radio interviews, including on WGN, KIIS-FM, and Sirius XM Doctor Radio. Louisa has appeared on the cover of Woman's World Magazine and is also featured regularly in their "Ask America's Ultimate Expert" column. Her tips have been featured on MSNBC.com, WomansDay.com, AOL Health and SheKnows.com. Louisa's YouTube page has had over 1,000,000 views and thousands of professionals and private individuals subscribe to her newsletter. Louisa is also the author of her new doctor-recommend book, "Age-Proof: Beauty Alternatives You Need to Know." For information about Louisa and more Red Light Therapy facts visit www.hollywoodbeautysecrets.com.