Stress & Weight Loss

By now, one would hope that most people understand that mindful eating combined with effective movement and proper breathing are vitally important for overall health. Practicing these principles will allow you to feel better, look better and be healthy. As I’m sure you are aware, many people who read diet books are primarily concerned with weight loss. Instead of being the goal, weight loss should be a natural result of putting these principles into practice in your life.

However, it is possible that despite the best efforts in being mindful and establishing a breathing and movement routine, high levels of stress may be preventing weight loss. In addition to all the other problems stress brings to our lives, it also prevents the metabolism from burning fat.

Unfortunately, there is no magic pill. The best way to deal with stress is by changing behavior patterns and altering the situations we put ourselves in. The interesting thing about stress is that it feeds on itself. A little bit of stress can quickly become a serious dysfunction if allowed to take hold. Stress can also be generated by taking on too much responsibility, which demands high-speed efficiency and productivity. You may make commitments or promises you are unable to keep. Simply put, the amount of stuff you are working on exceeds the actual time and effort you need to put into it. As you fall further behind, the more anxiety you generate.

There is hope, however. Mindful eating and gentle movement are exactly what we need in for dealing with stress. It may seem overly simplistic. But the truth is that it is often the simplest of things that can make the biggest difference. Deep, relaxed breathing stimulates the Parasympathetic Nervous System, which decreases blood pressure, slows the heart beat and allows the digestive process to function properly. Gentle body movement calms the bodily systems and helps the adrenal glands to regulate the amount of cortisol being secreted. Becoming mindful of the food we eat and adjusting our diet to more healthy choices gives the body the energy it needs to fend off the debilitating influences of stress.

Once we are in control of the situation, weight loss becomes less of an issue as the body seeks balance. Excess weight is lost gradually and permanently as we begin to feel more comfortable and relaxed in our own body. It only gets better.

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