Are you often stressed out?
I bet most of us agree that the lives we lead are full of stressors—at work and at home,
financial stressors, and personal stressors.
Does it seem to you that we are busier than ever on our cell phones, tablets, eating out, and
trying to squeeze in time for friends, family, even workouts?
These are times when we need to actively find ways to detoxify ourselves from the stressors
that bind us.
There is a good reason for this:
Chronic stress kills–this is a simple and well-known fact.
It takes a toll on major organs, like the heart, and impacts wellbeing and good health.
Those who are in a state of chronic stress will experience various side effects, including headaches,
fatigue, emotional outbursts, and others.
Stress Leads to Weight Gain
Did you know that chronic stress can also cause weight gain?
Now you have another thing to worry about.
Don’t worry, because worrying causes more stress.
Just learn the facts about the relationship between stress and weight gain and use
this knowledge to your advantage.
So how does stress contribute to weight gain, you wonder.
There are a number of ways in which stress can contribute to weight gain.
One has to do with cortisol, a stress hormone.
When we’re under stress, the fight or flight response is triggered in our bodies, leading to the
release of various hormones.
Whether we’re stressed because of family or relationship problems, overwhelming demands at
work, caring for a sick loved one, or being in a dangerous situation, our bodies respond like we’re
about to be harmed and need to fight for our lives.
To respond to this need, we experience a burst of energy, shifts in metabolism and blood flow,
and other changes.
your health and
weight loss efforts!”
This is no small matter.
Chronic stress puts your health at risk.
In addition to a host of other dangers, chronic stress can also cause weight gain.
How do chronic stress and cortisol can contribute to weight gain?
There are 4 key ways:
Too much cortisol can slow your metabolism, causing more weight gain than you would
That’s probably way you feel like you’re putting on more weight when you’re stressed,
even though you’re eating the same amount of food as you always have.
This worse part is that this also makes dieting even more difficult.
Oh, so that’s why I started gaining weight after my father became very ill.
I was worried about him all the time and spent many hours a week providing care.
When we experience chronic stress we often crave more fatty, salty and sugary foods including
sweets, processed food and other treats that aren’t so good for us.
Been there, done that.
Foods like these are usually less healthy and lead to increased weight gain.
3. Fat Storage
Wondering why you are getting a fat belly even though you are not eating more
Higher levels of stress are linked to greater levels of abdominal fat.
Excessive stress even affects where we tend to store fat.
The key concern about abdominal fat is that it is not only aesthetically undesirable, but
it’s linked with greater health risks than fat stored in other areas of the body.
3. Blood Sugar
Constant stress can affect your blood sugar levels, causing fatigue, mood swings, fatigue, and
Excessive stress has even been linked to metabolic syndrome, a group of health concerns that
may lead to serious health problems, such as heart attacks and diabetes.
Take Time to Detox from Stress
In view of the dangers of walking around in a chronic state of stress, it is vitally important to find
ways to reduce stress.
The truth is that stress does not have to be tolerated; it can be and should be dealt with.
Fortunately, there are ways to de-stress your body and self that are all natural and simple to learn.
Everyone should have some of these tools and techniques to fall back on during times of stress
Try These Stress Detox Methods
Yoga was originally practiced in the Eastern world and has been practiced for thousands of years.
Today, more than 18 million Americans practice yoga, and many more millions worldwide.
There are many types of yoga that can have different effects on the body.
For example, some yoga is purely relaxing, allowing your body to stretch and calm itself.
Other yoga is more energizing, giving you that added boost to get through your stressful day.
Let’s look at some different types of yoga:
• Kripalu Yoga.
This is a gentle, stress-free yoga practice that uses slow movements.
The idea is to be able to enter ever deeper mind-body states.
• Bikram Yoga
This is a challenging type of yoga involving doing around 26 different poses in a room that is set
to a temperature of greater than 100 degrees.
Also called “hot yoga”, it should be done by people who are medically fit to exercise in such
• Ashtanga Yoga
This is also challenging.
The yoga poses are done with little break time in between.
It utilizes specific breathing techniques that help you focus your mind, de-stress, and keep control
over the flow of your breathing.
• Hatha Yoga
This is one of the most commonly practiced styles of yoga.
It is very gentle and uses poses matched with breathing exercises that relax the body and mind.
It is probably the best type of yoga for people unfamiliar with what yoga is all about.
• Iyengar Yoga.
This is also a gentle yoga, perfectly fit for beginners.
It goes at a slow pace and focuses on getting the postures to be as close to “correct” as possible.
It makes use of tools like blocks, pillows and belts to help your body ease into relaxing poses.
• Kundalini Yoga.
This is an eclectic type of yoga that utilizes aspects of meditation, chanting, poses and breathing.
It is considered a spiritual form of yoga.
Try different types of yoga in different classes with different instructors until you find a style
that fits your physical fitness and emotional needs.
Millions of people around the world practice meditation and for good reason.
Meditation is based on focusing on your breath and becoming in tune with your mind and body;
it allows you to relax into yourself, letting go of the stressors of the day.
You can use techniques like visualizing yourself in a calm and peaceful place and you can use
meaningful sounds called mantras that are highly focusing on the mind.
Meditation can be done anywhere but it is best to start in a quiet place by yourself until you
get the hang of it.
It all begins with the breath and the instant relaxation you get when you focus on it.
As you go deeper into your awareness of self to the exclusion of any distractions, you can pray,
you can travel on an imaginary path your mind takes you, or you can simply use meditation to
shed your mind of those things that have stressed you out.
Massage is a special treat for people in serious distress.
The skills of a good massage therapist who will use essential oils or similar lubricating oils
to massage the tension out of your body are unparalleled.
There are many types of massage, some of which are more invigorating than others.
For stress, choose a type of massage that can gradually allow your body to relax with the help
of a skilled massage therapist, such as a Swedish style massage.
At the end of your massage session, you will likely feel warm all over with loosened muscles and
a much better attitude.
Just Let It Go
The truth is: to live a healthy, happy life, we need to actively find ways to detoxify ourselves
from the stressors that bind us.
Chronic stress kills and it contributes to weight gain.
That’s enough to make me want to say “OM”.
I am working too hard to eat healthy, exercise and lose weight to have chronic stress takes it’s toll on my
weight, well being and good health.
My favorite form of stress detox is a great massage.
But even a nice foot, back and shoulder massage at my local nail salon will do the trick in a pinch!
Fortunately, there are easy ways to de-stress your body and self that are all natural and simple to learn.
Be good to yourself and make time to use these techniques–or whatever works for you–during times of
stress and distress.
Make stress detox a natural part of you healthy lifestyle.
You’ll be glad you did!
How do you detox from stress?
What are your favorite ways to reduce feelings of stress?
Share your experiences, thoughts and comments with us.