We all know how weight gain occurs when we start eating more calories than the required amount. But why do we start overeating? Why is it sometimes that we suddenly feel the urge to eat high-calorie foods like chocolate or cake even though we know we will regret it later?
Just greed or some other reason?
Self-control is important, but scientists have found evidence that stress is a major cause of obesity. In the state of high stress, our sleep is disturbed and the amount of sugar in the blood is also affected. Because of this, we feel more hungry and get relief only by eating something. Dr. Giles Yeo of the team of the research group ‘Trust Me IMA Doctor’, with the help of scientists from the University of Leeds in the UK, spent a whole day in a highly stressful environment and mental stress. After that, they were given a ‘master stress test’.
They were asked to sit in front of a computer and quickly calculate. They kept making mistakes in calculations. They were then asked to put their hands in cold water. The team of scientists measured Giles’ blood sugar levels before and after the test. Our blood sugar level rises when we eat something. In a healthy person, the sugar level returns to normal soon. But the scientists found that on stressful days it took three hours for Giles’ blood sugar levels to return to normal. That means it took six times longer than a normal day.
This is because when you are under stress, your body thinks it is under attack from the outside. Therefore, the body starts releasing more glucose into the blood to fuel the muscles. But when this energy is not needed, the pancreas releases insulin, which helps bring blood glucose levels back to normal.
As insulin levels rise and blood sugar levels drop, we feel hungry again. That’s why when we are under stress, we crave more sweets. Similarly, even when we don’t get enough sleep, we feel hungry again and again. According to a study conducted at King’s College in the UK, we eat 385 more calories a day when we don’t get enough sleep. Children also ask for something to eat again and again if they cannot sleep properly.
How to keep stress away
By breathing in a certain way, you can keep stress away from yourself. If you make this method a part of your daily life, the benefits can be great. It can be done standing, sitting or lying down.
* Take a deep breath through the nose while counting to five
* Now slowly exhale through the mouth while counting to five
Repeat this process for five minutes
Another important thing is not to let your sleep get affected under any circumstances. Although this is easier said than done.
Increased cortisol levels
Another study found that people who have high levels of the “stress” hormone cortisol, and if this condition persists over a long period of time, it increases their body mass index (BMI). It may mean that people who have high levels of stress hormone have a larger waistline and those who have low levels may have a slightly smaller waistline.
Experts have also said that humans release cortisol hormone in the form of mental stress, which causes fundamental changes in the human body and increases obesity. For this, men and women aged 54 years and above were evaluated. It was a study about aging.
For this, experts discovered a new way to measure cortisol from human hair and tested it on volunteers. People who had elevated cortisol levels for several years were more likely to be overweight and obese than others. Experts have summarized the research and said that stress is directly related to obesity.
This is why experts emphasize different types of physical activity to keep stress and obesity away from life. These include exercising, gardening and yoga. In this way, you not only stay physically fit and agile, but it also prevents you from suffering from mental stress, which in turn keeps obesity at bay.