How does stress affect weight loss?

Vandana  R. Sheth
Nutrition & Dietetics

Stress can have a negative effect on weight. Studies have linked an increased stress level to increased fat storage/weight gain. However, lifestyle choices including inadequate sleep, fast food meals, inadequate exercise also play a key role in weight gain associated with stress. Stress management is an important factor in a successful weight loss plan along with healthy eating, adequate sleep and regular physical activity.

Stress may be hindering your weight loss. That's because your body releases the hormone cortisol when you're stressed, which makes you crave fatty, sugary foods that promote dreaded belly fat. Do what you can to soothe that stress. A study of overweight and obese women revealed that fighting stress can help shrink belly fat. The less you stress, the less you'll crave cookies and ice cream.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.