Ultimate Guide to Stress: 7 Tips to Decrease Stress
Stress is a reality in life. Everyone has stress. Research reveals stress causes us to be fatter. You maybe that person who exercises daily. But, chronic high stress can destroy anyone’s efforts for a healthy lifestyle.
This is how stress makes you fat…
The Science of How Stress Makes You Fat
Stress is a natural physical response and mental reaction to experiences. Stress in life is unavoidable. We all have it. It’s our body’s way of telling us it needs to protect itself.
Any event, large or small can trigger stress: a new job, a new project, buying a home, having a baby, a medical diagnosis… or something as simple as your kid didn’t take out the trash when you asked them to.
In some cases, stress can be beneficial. It helps you cope with difficult situations. It makes you brain and your body stand on point and get ready to take speedy action.
It’s a good idea to start reducing your stress because it could change your life.
Benefits of Controlling Stress:
- Sustainable focus
- Increased energy
- Burn more fat
- Better Sleep
- Heightened well-being
There’s a problem with stress we experience today. The elevated need to respond to external stimulus is some time too extreme for the circumstance.
Other time, we don’t release the stress we experienced in a given situation. Instead, we hold on to it for way too long. So long that the stress response hurts us rather than helps us.
Your body responds to stress in a predictable way. Under stress your brain goes into fight or flight mode and releases adrenaline. Cortisol rises. When you are under stress cortisol continues being produced.
Cortisol tells your brain to tell your body you need food. Your brain sends your body into survival mode for protection. We respond by reaching for comfort foods. In this state, your hormones are out of balance.
When you get your stress under control, especially at the start of a low carb high fat (LCHF) lifestyle, you have the potential to lose a great deal of weight.
Let’s learn more about how you can boost your metabolism with some simple tips to decrease stress. You can start these tips today.
You may unaware of the stress you’re experiencing, Your attention travels off to the next situation needing your attention, but the stress from a previous event stays with you.
Your body is impacted by residual effects of stress.
Signs You May Be Stressed
You may believe you aren’t under pressure. You manage situation well. You’re able to tend to your responsibilties at work. Home life is great, and everyone is healthy. This doesn’t mean you’re free of stress. Because you get everything done, you may be inflicting yourself to pressures of “getting it all done”. Here are some signs you might be stressed:
- Weakened immune system,
- Pounding heart rate
- High blood pressure
- Rapid breathing
- High blood sugar
- Tense muscles
- Fertility problems
- decreased libido
- erectile dysfunction
This is quite a list. Stress impacts you at many levels. Before you can control, know some basic information about how stress works in your body is helpful.
Let’s look at how stress effects specific areas of your body.
How Stress Effects the Respiratory and Cardiovascular Systems
Stress hormones impact your respiratory and cardiovascular systems. Under stress your breath increases. Oxygen fills your lungs and sends oxygenated blood throughout your body. This rush of oxygen can be a problem with those who have asthma or emphysema.
With the increase of oxygen comes an increase in heart rate. Stress hormones cause your blood vessels to constrict, They push more blood to your limbs. This response is meant to helps you take action and run faster. Your blood pressure also increases.
Chronic stress can cause the heart to work much too hard for far too long, if stress is constant. Increased blood pressure over time puts you at risk for increased heart attack and stroke.
How Stress impacts the Digestive System
The liver goes work making sugar when you experience stress. When stress is high for long periods of time, your sugar levels remain increased. This constant increase is detrimental to your health. Chronic stress puts you at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
The hormone surge, increase of breath, and heart rate impacts your digestive system. Stomach acids rise and may cause acid reflux. The risk of ulcers increase, as well.
Food move differently through your body when you experience stress. Chronic stress has the power to stop you digestive system or just the opposite. It can constipate you.
We could talk more about how stress impacts muscles and why you have shoulder pain or back pain, We could also touch on your libido and your reproductive system that’s stifled by your survival response. But, we’re going to fly right by these issues and your immune systems and jump to the main reason for this post…
How Stress Causes You to Gain Weight
Stress can make you fat. Stress makes you hungry. This may be the result of hormonal triggers that cause shifts in metabolism, insulin, and fat storage.
When you’re in the fight or flight state, adrenaline and cortisol work as a team. Adrenaline takes the lead in order to present immediate defense for your body. Cortisol sticks around and suppresses digestion, your immune system, and your reproductive organs.
Stress Slows Down Metaboilsm
You can burn up to 104 fewer calories than someone who’s not stressed. This alone would cause you to gain 11 pounds in one year. Higher levels of insulin causes higher levels of insulin. The body also resists burn the fat that IS stored.
Cravings Increase Under Stress. People who are stressed crave more fatty, salty, and sugary foods. More stress may lead to more emotional eating. To compound the problem, less sleep – insomnia and sleep deprived nights – are typical for people under chronic stress.
All of this leads to the perfect storm for weight gain. You may think it’s your will-power that’s lacking, but this is not the case. Physiologically, your body is a mess.
9 Hacks to Boost your Metabolism
Keep a Stress Journal
Raise your awareness to where stress presents itself during the day. Is there a specific situation at work that always results in an elevated heart rate or causes an emotional response? Write it down. Does your significant other stress you out in the same way every day? Does rushing out the door in the morning make you feel frazzled and overwhelmed?
Write down all your observations about where stress rears its head during your day. Then reflect on how you can shift either your perspective or behaviors to better deal with these challenging moments. The stress journal isn’t about placing blame elsewhere.
In fact, it’s just the opposite. A stress journal is about making observations about your environment and how you act and react in that environment. Then you want to own your reactions. Take accountability for your physical and emotional reactions.
The next step is to plan how you can change your behaviors to better cope with the situations that reveal themselves as stressful. You can incorporate some of the following stress hacks to helps you reduce your stress each day in order to helps you lose weight and be successful on the keto diet.
Practice Deep Breathing During the Day
Most people take shallow breaths all day long. Your brain needs oxygen. Mitochondria need oxygen. The very simple act of breathing more intentionally throughout your day has the power to raise your metabolism because oxygen, like food, is a fuel source.
Make a point to pause for a breathing break every three hours. No one needs to know you’re doing it. You can do it in your car, at your desk, walking down the hallway or in the elevator.
If you want to maximize weight loss on keto, use this free simple stress reduction tip to manage your stress.
How to Breath Intentionally
- Sit up (or stand up) straight
- Put your hand on your belly button
- Breath in for the count of 10-12
- Hold that deep, fill breaths for 5 seconds.
- Exhale out for 10-12 seconds
- Expel all air, pushing with the diaphragm
- Repeat 5 times
The point of this exercise is to make you aware of your diaphragm and breath deeply. With your hand on your belly button you should fill your body with air first by filling up from the diaphragm. Your belly should extend forward as you inhale.
Then continue inhaling to fill the lungs. At this point your rig cage expanding. At 10-12 seconds of inhaling, you’ll feel like a barrel full of air. Hold this breath for five seconds.
In an even breath, release the air as slowing and smoothly as you inhaled. But, at the end of the exhale, give your diaphragm and extra squeeze and expel all the air you possibly can. Then repeat. The process four more times
Get into the habit of taking multiple breathing breaks throughout your day. This will increase your metabolism and reduce stress. The process of inhaling with intentional focus begins the distressing process. The oxygen you will up on is what make the stress reduction last after you’re done.
Meditation can actually reduce stress and helps you lose weight. It decreases the levels of cortisol, the belly storing hormone, and help control insulin resistance.
Meditation does not have to be a complicated process. You don’t need to be an expert to benefit from meditation. Build it into your daily routine and you can reduce your stress and lose weight.
Here are tips on how to meditate for beginners:
- Select a consistent time of day.
- Set a timer for 15 minutes.
- Turn off distractions.
- Inhale and exhale with awareness and intention.
- Focus on the current moment.
- Clear your head of responsibilities, worries, an concerns
- Imagine air flowing into your body through your limbs and in your cells
You can reduce your stress by mediating just a few minutes a day. People who practice meditation are said to be in better over all health than those who don’t.
You may want to listen to relaxing music or binural beats to helps you train your attention during this quiet time. Meditation is an effortless way to control your metabolism and your emotional balance.
Exercise is proven to reduce stress and increase your metabolism. You don’t need to go to the gym to decrease stress. when you exercise your circulatory systems get moving. You also eliminate toxins in the process.
If you get bored with exercise change up your activities regularly. Here are some possible exercises that are excellent choices:
- Resistence Bands
- Rock climbing
If you’re already a gym goer, these suggestions may not be for you. However, everyone can benefit from a brisk daily walk even the most skilled athletes.
Some exercises are more effective at moving your lymphatic system. Rebounding is outstanding for this. So are resistance bands when done correctly.
Get Sunshine: Vitamin D
50% of the world’s population is vitamin D deficient. Very little foods contain vitamin D, so you have two choice: supplement with vitamin D or get it from the sun.
Vitamin D is important because it fights against:
- heart disease
- calcium deficiency
- autoimmune disease
- type 2 diabetes
In a nut shell Vitamin D helps you live longer. More specifically, it helps control insulin levels and ultimately your weight.
You can get Vitamin D2 from oily fish like salmon, mackerel, and herring. D3, on the other hand is produced in the body after UVB exposure, traveling through the body in the lymphatic system.
Vitamin D is unique. It’s made in the skin after sun exposure. The body uses the vitamin for
Sunshine is powerful for your emotions. Emotions impact stress. This is why getting outside and being in nature is a powerful way to stimulate your happy hormones. Being outside give you ____ of vitamin d. Vitamin d is an energy source.
Your brain also response to sun. It releases. Dopamine releases with exposure to sunshine. So
Supplement With Magnesium
75% of the population is magnesium deficient. It’s called natures Valium because of its calming effects. You need magnesium for 600 metabolic functions.
With the rise of magnesium deficiencies, anxiety rate has increased. Magnesium stimulates GABA receptors in the brain. You can decrease the feeling of overwhelm, racing thoughts, and irritable bowel syndrome by supplementing with magnesium. It decreases the level of hormones that work against your weight loss efforts.
Increasing magnesium levels will decrease inflammation, one of the most significant benefits of magnesium. Brain inflammation is also linked to anxiety and depression. Reduce chronic inflammation throughout your body and you’ll decrease stress.
Implement Daily Routines
Creating predicable scenarios throughout your day is important for your feelings of security. We all want control of our lives. It’s difficult to take control over every situation that faces you. You can’t control everything, but you can control how you chose to respond to situations.
When you get frustrated at work or with a loved one, are you going to lash out and allow your blood pressure to surge, or are you going to choose to take a few deep breaths and focus on own behaviors?
Make it routine to respond only after taking a few deep breaths. Become intentional about your contribution to every interaction and this will decrease your stress throughout the day.
Institute a routine in your environment each day. Dedicate yourself to engaging in the same routines until they become rituals. Wake up 15 minutes earlier in order to organize your day. Review your schedule. Visualize how your day will play out and what you need to get done.
Do the same in the evening. Schedule a consistent bed time. Carve out a half hour before your bedtime to go through the same activities each night: Make tea, review your day and tomorrow’s schedule, brush your teeth, and read from a good book.
Training your brain to shut down will helps you sleep better. You’ll decrease your stress and this will helps you control your weight because your cortisol level will be more controlled.
If you want to decrease your stress and lose weight, you have to be proactive. Make stress reduction a top priority with these simple step:
- Keep a stress journal for self observation.
- Meditate every day, even if it’s only 10 minute sessions.
- Practice intentional deep breathing throughout the day.
- Make exercise a priority to help your body and your mind.
- Give yourself time in the sun every day to get vitamin D.
- Supplement with magnesium to reduce inflammation and anxiety.
- Establish daily routines in the morning and the evenings to increase the feeling of control.
You don’t have to implement all of these suggestions all at once. That make sabotage your stress reducing efforts. Take one at a time. Implement your favorite one for a week or two.
Then add another one. Allow them to become habits. You need to give yourself the opportunity get comfortable with new observations and behaviors. Make the effort to reduce your stress and you will lose weight more efficiently.
Are you serious about reducing your stress and losing weight? You can do that by living the low carb lifestyle. Check out our Beginners Guide to Keto and get started on redesigning your life today!