We all know that too much stress is a bad thing. It can make you feel tired, irritable and leave you feeling overwhelmed.
Stress can also lead indirectly to weight gain. This is caused by the chemical Cortisol which is released by the adrenal glands as reaction to stress on the body. Cortisol’s main function is to produce blood sugar. If too much blood sugar is produced then it is used for fat production that quite often sits round your tummy.
There is also one further chemical that can cause weight gain, serotonin. serotonin is found in foods like chocolate pasta, potatoes and bread. Serotonin is released to help relax the body. When people are stressed these foods help relax the body and make you feel better. The result is that you tend to want to binge on these foods when you feel stressed.
There are other ways to increase feel good chemicals like serotonin in your brain without resorting to an eating frenzy. Getting out into the fresh air, a little light exercise, as well as the more traditional aerobics will help reduce stress and increase the feel good chemicals in your brain helping you to feel happier and more in control.
There are also alternatives to fattening serotonin foods as serotonin can also be found in bananas, turkey, pumpkin, or foods rich in folic acid, like for example, cabbage, broccoli, spinach and beets all of which are among the best well-known “serotonin rich foods“.
Another easy way to help reduce stress is by creating an ambient atmosphere around yourself by using Aromatherapy oils. For example, rose or ylang-ylang scents are both good for stress, while lavender can help make you feel calm.
Whether you place a few drops of essential oil on your pillow at night-time or you use aromatherapy oils in your bath or in a vaporiser the affect on your mood can be quite astonishing. Try it and you will find you won’t be turning to the chocolate so often.