We live in a society where stress seems to be so normal and common. We here the word all the time and encounter it everywhere in the media.

Many of us are genuinely affected by stress at some point in our lifetime, however a lot of us do not realise how stress can be affecting our body, or how stress and weight loss are co-related.

Yet we keep pushing and pushing and pushing, saying to ourselves ‘’It will all get better once this stressful time passes’’ and when it does, the next stressful period arrives…

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So what is it and how can we deal with it?

Stress can happen in all kinds of ways. It can happen at home, running the household, where you find you don’t have a moment to yourself. It can happen at the workplace where you find you have too much to do, your boss is being too demanding or a colleague is making your life hell. Stress can be caused through a relationship with our partner, family member or friend.

Stress and anxiety are normal feelings we all go through at one time or other. However we forget that stress can be the major factor affecting our weight loss goals. We exercise, eat right and then try and add more exercise when we do not see our results. Then we try and eat even less and restrictive ourselves even more with our food intake when the scales still do not move!

If we fail to see that unless we target our stress factor, then the results we are seeking will not happen!

Stress causes a number of conditions in the body and disrupts every system in our body, and these conditions all work along the lines of sabotaging your weight loss results.

These conditions include:

*Lack of sleep. By not getting your proper 7-8 hours a night, your body is not getting the right amount of sleep and rest it needs to re-set and re-charge for the next day. So it suffers and it struggles to keep up with your daily demands, plus add all the caffeine fixes we consume in the day and you have yourself a roller coaster of highs and lows.

A proper good night sleep will get you re-charged and ready all set to tackle your day ahead with full energy, including your daily workload, tasks and workouts.

Stress and weight loss

*Immune system. Stress brings your high functioning immune system down to a poor level, and we can end up catching any virus or bug that might pass our way. Once we get sick it is highly unlikely we can exercise and train or eat properly and end up having to get back on track once we recovered again.

*Blood sugar. Under stress, your liver produces extra blood sugar glucose. Insulin is released to handle the blood sugar levels in our body. With stress more blood sugar is produced so the body secretes more insulin also.

Unused blood sugar is reabsorbed by the body. Your body might not be able to keep up with this extra glucose surge and you may be at an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

*Muscular system. Under stress your muscles tend to tense up to protect themselves, and you will feel them release again once you relax. This can affect your posture, form and technique during exercise.

If you are under constant stress, your muscles do not get the chance to relax. Ever suffer from the following: headaches, back and shoulder pain, neck strain and body aches. This is all caused due to tight muscles.

Further over time you may even stop exercising and turn to use pain medication which can set off an unhealthy cycle.

*Bowel movements. Stress can affect digestion, which effects what nutrients your intestines absorb or do not absorb as it will depend how fast the food travels through your body. So you may end up suffering in your bowel movements by having diarrhoea or constipation.

So if we exercise, eat well and also increase stress reducing techniques into our health and wellness lifestyle, then we are avoiding the conditions above

So we can perform better and we learn how to deal with the stress or reduce its negative effects on us. Examples include: going to bed early to get a full night’s sleep, meditation for 5-10mins, taking time out for ourselves, practising deep breathing, listening to good music, delegating tasks to others so the burden does not fall on to us, talking to a friend or therapist, speaking up at work to our boss or colleague.

So by getting down to the route of problem which is causing our stress, we will see much better results on the scale and be able to achieve our weight loss, health and wellness goals at a much faster and easier way!

Connect here with WatchFit Expert Denise Grixti

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