The reduction of stress is linked to losing weight. This may have been discovered by accident, but it has been shown that even when people are not on diets, reducing stress results in weight loss. Why is this an important factor in weight loss? For one, people who are constantly stressed – by their job, their home situation or in other areas of their life – will often eat in response to the stress. In addition, the food they eat is more times than not a high calorie food containing sugar.
Dieting is Stressful
One example of this is dieting itself. This can trigger stress. The fear of failure and the denial of food that you want can be stressful. Feeling like you are depriving yourself of the food that you love and enjoy eating can increase stress. The normal reaction when feeling stress is to do something that makes you feel better. For many, this is eating.
Mental, Physical and Emotional Feelings
The feelings that we feel are all responsible for eating. Why should stress be any different? We eat when we are happy to celebrate, when we are depressed, when we are bored and when we are sad. Food has become the answer to all emotions. This is where we need to draw the line.
Finding another method of handling stress is important if you want to lose weight. The temporary relief felt by eating food that is high in calories, such as sugar and fat will not last. As soon as you start feeling stressed again, you will seek food to make the feelings go away and this will prevent you from losing weight. As a matter of fact, it is likely that you will gain weight, which adds to the stress.
If you really want to lose weight and have not been able to do so, take a good look at your life. Are you under a lot of stress at work? Is your home life so stressful that you dread coming home? Finding a solution for these stressful situations and others, which does not include eating is essential if you are going to lose weight.
Food is not the Answer for Feelings including Stress
This is a ‘learned response’. When you were small, one of the first things learned was food was good for everything. When you fell down and skinned your knee, a band-aid, a kiss and a cookie made it all better. When you cried because your feelings were hurt, a piece of pie or cake was the answer. The first step is to stop using food for mental, physical and emotional feelings including stress.
Finding an alternate method to handle stress and other feelings will be the best way to stop eating food that is not good for you in an effort to feel better. For some people, it may be relaxation techniques. For others, it can be exercise or talking to someone. Remove the temptation by eliminating the foods that you know are not good for you from your home. This will give you time to deal with the feelings without being tempted by food.