The combination of stress and a poor diet can have serious, potentially life-threatening consequences for individuals dealing with both circumstances. These two significant barriers to good health can contribute to several medical issues including:
Medical researchers opine that, in the short-term, stress decreased the appetite. However, chronic or excessive stress might precipitate frequent overeating. Overindulgence is often precipitated by the body’s release of chemicals known as “stress hormones.” W
When released in excess, such hormones (of which cortisol is more of the well-known offenders) not only stimulate the stricken person’s appetite but increases their desire to eat at more frequent durations. Individuals who consume a greater quantity of calories at more recurrent intervals often stand at an increased risk of gaining weight. Excess weight can precipitate numerous potentially serious health issues such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and bone weakness and fractures.
Cravings For Unhealthy Foods
Medical researchers opine that, in addition to fostering increased systemic concentrations of stress hormones, periods of high anxiety are also thought to elevate internal levels of insulin. Insulin is a digestive hormone that helps the body metabolize numerous different substances, most notably glucose (sugar). Ergo, highly stressed persons often consume potentially unhealthy foods containing significant amounts of sugar and fat. Increased or excessive intake of these substances can ultimately lead to weight gain. Moreover, overindulgence in sugary products can increase one’s risk of contracting diabetes, which may precipitate a host of serious health concerns.
A Diminished Desire To Eat Healthy
Individuals exposed to intense stress might develop a diminished desire to consume healthy foods. Adhering to a healthy, nutritious diet often requires a certain degree of individual effort. Persons coping with continual stress may lose the desire to or simply not possess the time necessary to prepare more healthier food choices. In turn, such individuals often resort to eating fast food or canned, frozen or processed foods rife with fat, sugar and other potentially detrimental substances.
Methods Of Reversing The Cycle
Fortunately, stressed individuals might be able to maintain optimal health and overcoming the pitfalls related to stress and food consumption by employing beneficial tactics such as purchasing healthy snack foods to consume when cravings arise, avoid other potentially detrimental vices like excess caffeine, cigarette smoking and alcohol, as well as partaking in enjoyable or relaxing hobbies, which can be undertaken instead of eating.