Stress is constantly present in our lives. It has very positive functions. If something goes wrong, we feel the stress that mobilizes us to act and fix the situation. The feeling of stress is fully evolutionary and natural. If our ancient ancestors did not feel stress and anxiety at the sight of venomous snakes and wild animals, then we wouldn’t have ancestors at all.
When stress becomes a problem
Stress can, however, cause us many problems in everyday life. If it is not a negative phenomenon itself, trouble can start when we feel too much stress. For our ancestors, stress was the basis for undertaking specific actions. In the case of close contact with wild animals, the level of stress felt was a trigger of fight or flight response.
We now live in a society that largely protects us from such dramatic choices. Stress, however, remains the same. If it occurs at a low intensity, it mobilizes us to act. When the stress level is too high, we feel paralyzed. Stress is currently a big problem in our society. An increasing number of people complain of chronic stress. It is worth knowing the ways to reduce it because stress felt for a long time can lead to negative changes in our body. Chronic stress is widely thought to contribute to many diseases. In some cases, it is also a cause of excess weight gain.
People who are overweight often complain of high levels of stress. Stress eating is a common problem encountered in this group. This means that in a stressful situation, these people eat a lot to calm down. Most often they do not choose light low-calorie dishes. To alleviate stress chocolate, fast food and unhealthy snacks work best.
Thanks to (mostly unhealthy) food, these people can calm down, but it is a temporary state. Eating stress causes us to feel guilty, additionally gaining weight, which is also a further reason for being stressed. It is a vicious cycle from which it is difficult to find a good way out. Eating in stressful situations is in many cases a habit taken from the home. We often observe parents who behave in this way. It happened that in childhood we were rewarded with food. When we were sad, parents, to comfort us, bought us chocolate or took us for ice creams. In adulthood, we duplicate these patterns, which is the reason for many problems.
How to fight stress?
Research shows that stressed and overweight people more often than others develop various types of cancer. This is reason enough to start the fight against both stress and overweight. We can reduce stress levels by various methods, but we will achieve the best results when we combine several effective methods.
The first thing that can contribute to reducing stress and reducing weight at the same time is a properly balanced diet. It should not be a low caloric one. It is much better to lower your daily calorie intake only to a level that will allow us to lose one kilo a week at most. A diet that will help us reduce stress levels should be rich in B vitamins, magnesium and potassium, which have a very positive effect on our nervous system.
It is worth eating cereal, nuts, stones, whole bread, bananas or potatoes. A properly balanced diet is the first step to success. A very good way to reduce stress is to include regular physical activity in your weekly plan. Exercise causes our body to start producing endorphins, i.e. the so-called happiness hormones, which contribute to reducing stress. As a result of exercise, our condition increases, our body is fitter and fitter, moreover, it looks much better. Our new image is a reason for greater self-confidence, which makes us deal with stress better. Finally, it is worth mentioning the dose of sleep necessary for our body that allows its proper functioning.