Stress and Weight GaiN

Stress and weight gain are two of the largest issues impacting health and quality of life in the United States. And the connection between the two is now a scientific fact.

The thing that gets to me is that our society spends billions of dollars on weight loss gimmicks. And comparatively very little on managing stress in our daily lives  (popping a pill for hypertension  does not qualify!)

How does that make any sense when we KNOW that stress causes weight gain?  Especially when the rewards of stress relief, by definition, make you feel so good.

Today I want to share the two major reasons why I believe the best weight loss programs are those that include mind power techniques such as hypnosis and self hypnosis.

Simply stated, mind power techniques get the power of your mind working for you to help you change your habits AND reduce stress. For positive change to be permanent, you need to "install" a new set of habits that support that change.  After all, what is the good of losing weight if you don't have skill set to keep it off?

Most people are aware that stress is a major contributor to  health problems particularly because of the chaos it creates for the immune system.  

Now research has exposed an even more troubling relationship between stress and weight management, than what most people realize:

two ASPECTS  OF STRESS AND WEIGHT GAIN

When it comes to stress and weight gain, there are two issues at play:

1. Stress and how it effects habit formation

2. Belly fat and stress

1. Stress and habit formation.

An article published in the Journal of Science reveals that researchers in Portugal recently discovered that when your body is under stress, you are MORE likely to repeat behaviors, even behaviors that are BAD for you.

Under stress, brain regions associated with executive decision-making and goal-directed behaviors shrivel up while those associated with habit formation expand. 

That means that destructive behavior patterns such as emotional eating, late night snacking on  high calorie "comfort foods," lack of exercise motivation, etc. are likely to develop into stronger habits.

2. Belly fat and stress

Researchers from the University of Maryland Medical School as well as that of Yale University now say that stress causes belly fat. .

Even underweight people, particularly middle aged women, are prone to collect dangerous amounts of fat around their waist line.

When your brain perceives  stress as a danger, it pumps adrenalin into your system and speeds up your heart rate so that your muscles can be flooded with blood for instant strength and survival.  This is called the Fight-Flight response.

The problem is that the brain can't tell the difference between survival stress and chronic, daily stress so it commands your adrenal glands to produce cortisol. Cortisol is a stress hormone which shifts the body from a fat-burning mode to more of a sugar-burning mode. 

Special receptors on fat cells deep inside the abdomen, are specially designed to hook up with cortisol and collect fat. That is why even underweight people can collect belly fat.

The more stressed you are the more your body burns sugar and not fat.
Ever crave sweets when under stress? 
Ever wonder why?

People who are stressed out, typically store more belly fat than people who approach life in a positive, relaxed frame of mind.

Seven strategies recommended for stress and weight gain

  1. Learn self hypnosis to relax AND make habit changes easier. (please self note: Self hypnosis is not some woowooo thing. It is training for your mind to relax, focus on positive outcomes, and make the changes in your life you want to make.   )
  2. Physical exercise – vigorous weight lifting at least twice a week AND 30 minutes a day of moderate physical activity. 
  3. Relaxation exercises such as hypnosis for stress relief  or learn how to do meditation
  4. Maintain a positive mindset 
  5. Healthy eating
  6. Use daily positive affirmations to help you counter negative self talk that unconsciously stresses you out. You also find specific  affirmations for stress reduction here.
  7. Learn mind power techniques to make habit change easier. .

The stress and weight gain relationship gets even stronger when you consider how the symptoms of stress, like lack of sleep are also huge factors in weight management.

That is why I dedicated a whole audio to helping you manage and control stress in the Mind To Succeed weight loss system, "Thin, Fit Fabulous You."

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More About Coping With Stress

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