6 Best Foods to Avoid Stress-Related Weight Gain Say Nutritionists
Emphasize can manifest itself in many ways in the body. While some notice sleep disturbances, others may suffer changes in their eating habits along with various other symptoms that are often associated with stress as well. Long-term stress can also result in weight gain. While the mechanism behind stress-induced weight gain is diverse, there are some notable contributors, many of which are related to hormonal changes.
Hormone changes due to stress can have a cascading impact on the body that can impact weight, sleep, and more. In particular cortisol is a hormone that is released in your body when you are stressed. For this reason, cortisol is often referred to as the “stress hormone”. However, cortisol performs many other functions in the body, including regulating blood pressure and blood sugar, and supporting your circadian rhythm. The relationship between stress and weight gain is well documented, and research shows that higher levels of cortisol are often present associated with abdominal obesity.
While a great deal of research has linked cortisol levels to weight gain, the driving forces behind this association are numerous. One reason cortisol can lead to weight gain is because this hormone can increase blood sugar. There is also evidence of high cortisol levels increase appetite, which increases the potential for overeating. Finally, cortisol also affects metabolism and power consumptionwhich further affects the weight.
With multiple levels of influence, it’s no wonder higher cortisol levels can lead to weight gain. While stress management should be a priority, your dietary choices can also affect and help control your weight during times of stress. To best avoid stress-induced weight gain, here are six healthy foods to consider. You can also find more healthy eating tips to help you control and maintain a healthy weight here 21 “healthy” habits that are secretly making you gain weight.
research suggests that a diet high in added sugars, refined carbohydrates, and saturated fats may lead to higher cortisol levels than a more balanced diet high in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and unsaturated fats. While this research is compelling enough to encourage higher fruit consumption to avoid stress-related weight gain, there are some other reasons to eat more produce. fruit is a source of dietary fiber, a satiating nutrient that may be able to combat increased appetite caused by stress. It’s also a relatively low-calorie food, so you can have a hearty portion without adding too many calories to your day.
Similar to fruits, vegetables are a source of fiber that can help you feel fuller for longer. Because increased appetite and overeating have been documented associated with stress, high-volume, high-fiber foods may be beneficial in fighting weight gain. Many vegetables provide very few calories and grams of carbohydrates, making them great choices for snacking and adding bulk to meals. Additionally, the fiber found in vegetables can aid in digestion, and certain types of vegetables aid in digestion Good bacteria in the gut that have been linked better mental health.
This food category includes oats, brown rice, quinoa, whole grain breads, and so many other common foods you may already have in your pantry. While whole grains contain fiber to help help you feel full, they also contain a specific form of fiber that supports the beneficial probiotic bacteria in your gut. This fiber is also called a prebioticand supplements of this nutrient have been found reduce stress reactions in the body. With two beneficial forms of fiber found in whole grains, they have a multi-layered benefit when it comes to reduced stress-related weight gain.
Another food category with impressive amounts of fiber, beans and lenses stand out for their fiber benefits, which include smooth digestion and prebiotic functions. While these foods aren’t as easy to eat as fruit, veggies, and whole grains, they can be incorporated into your diet in many different ways. Add legumes and lentils to your favorite soups and salads, enjoy as an accompaniment to your protein and veggies, and puree into a spread to spread on toast or dip with veggies.
While the previous foods are notable for their fiber benefits and important prebiotic functions, yogurt is a food source that contains probiotics, the healthy live bacteria in your gut. Because stress can affect mental health, it’s important to choose foods that can support your mental and physical well-being during times of higher stress. While yogurt may not be able to lower cortisol levels, the probiotic it contains may be able to improve mood and reduce stress and anxiety levels. These improvements could result in less stress-related weight gain.
All types of fish serve as a great source of protein, and some varieties also contain healthy omega-3 fats. Salmon and tuna in particular contain this nutrient is designed to support the body’s response to stress. In addition, omega-3 fat appears to improve mental health, a component of well-being that is often compromised by stress. While the unique fats found in fish may help with stress and mental health, the protein it contains may also improve feelings of satiety, which could offset overeating and the resulting weight gain.
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