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Feeling Like This Makes You FAT – How You Can Prevent It (So Quick & Easy)!

By on June 7, 2017
So what comes first: Anxiety or a thicker waistline? As it turns out, when anxiety arises first, so too will your weight–in spades, no less.

Previously, researchers knew both factors were related, but weren’t sure how exactly they worked.

“We don’t know which came first, the greater body weight or the higher cortisol,” says Andrew Steptoe, a professor of psychology at the University College London. “In this study, we did not see any difference between men and women. However, since all the men and women were older, the same results may not be the same in younger adults.”

The Research

In the study, which appears in the journal Obesity, researchers studied a group of 2,500 adults living in England with an average age of 54. Prior to the study, their body weight, waist circumference, and body mass index (BMI) were collected to determine if they met the criteria for obesity.

Researchers also measured their cortisol, a stress hormone. To do so, they collected hair strands cut close to the scalp, which contained their total cortisol levels accumulated over a 2 month period.

They then compared their cortisol readings to their current body weight.

As they expected, people who met the criteria for obesity had higher cortisol levels. They boasted high BMI levels overall, as well as higher accumulated levels of body fat. This also meant they had larger waistlines, a risk factor for other diseases such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Overall, the research proved a strong association, though a cause-and-effect result could not be established.

Connie Diekman, a Washington University director of university nutrition, hypothesizes that stress eating could explain the link between both factors:

“Managing stress eating is complicated, and what works for some does not work for others. [I suggest] maintaining a regular meal schedule. That reduces blood sugar drops that can trigger overeating. When you eat, avoid doing anything else. Instead of checking email, watching television or movies or working, focus on the food.”

So what does this mean for you? Simple: To stay thin, controlling your anxiety is key. Finding ways to alleviate anxiety and stress is crucial for staying physically and mentally fit; simple activities such as yoga, meditation, or even listening to ASMR videos could help. But if that’s not enough, getting help from a mental health specialist could drastically improve your ability to cope.

Readers: How do you deal with sudden anxiety?

Sources:
A Stressed Life May Mean a Wider WaistlineWebMD.com

About The Author: Health Cracker!

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