The Importance of Stress Control: The Weight Loss Nemesis

I wanted to create a blog post on stress and its many implications for body fat loss.

From my 15 years of experience I have to say that high stress levels are probably the most under-appreciated blocking factor that either stops people losing body fat or contributes to their weight gain.

I have seen many people who eat healthily and exercise consistently and effectively yet still have a problem with excess body fat, why can this be?

High stress leading to dis-ease or losing hemostasis/blanance is the main reason this happens.

Let me go into more detail but start with let me re-iterate; if you want to be healthy and lose body fat or even gain muscle then getting stress under control is one of the most critical things you can do.

When a body is too stressed the following physiological adaptations will happen:

  1. You create more lipogenic enzymes (fat storage enzymes).
  2. You decrease the number of lipolytic enzymes (fat burning enzymes).
  3. You create increase in the size of fat cells.
  4. You create insulin and blood sugar handling problems, which most of the time creates fat storage and hypoglycemic symptoms = cravings!
  5. Any time insulin goes up, estrogen goes up, which creates estrogen dominance (not enough progesterone to oppose estrogen).
  6. When you’re stressed, the body converts more hormonal precursors (cholesterol and pregnenolone) to cortisol, than to progesterone. This leads to estrogen dominance, which leads to excess weight around the midsection and gluteal cleft area (according to Charles Poliquin, this is where there are a lot of estrogen receptors). Estrogen is stored and produces in fat cells. The more you have or the more dominant you are with estrogen, the harder it is to lose fat.
  7. More cortisol is released. When cortisol goes up, insulin goes up to protect the body. Both of these are convert glucose into fat =fat storing hormones.

So you can see how many changes there are when your physiological load (overall stress) is too high. I have not chosen to highlight insignificant or un-likely changes but ones that happen very easily when the body is presented with high stress levels.

My Suggestions for dealing with stress are:

  1. Brainstorm using the guide below where your stress is coming from.
  2. Come up with a 20 point attack list, it can be more than 20 but not one less, you can use this list to ruthlessly attack the stress in your life.

Here is an Infographic of Pshychological Load:

Infographic graph of Pshychological Load

The optimum thing to do is to learn how to create changes that absolve the stress, if you feel this is impossible to do then learning to look at life through a different lens can be useful.

At the very least it is imperative that you learn to counter-balance the stress with work-in exercise.

Work-in exercise is an activity that does not elevate the breathing above what it would be if you were resting but helps create energy in the body.

Examples might be breathing exercises, meditation, prayer and certain types of yoga.

I would recommend purchasing the eBook, the last 4 doctors you will ever need by Healthy 4 U’s trusted partners and trying the work-in exercises in there to see which one suits you then try to do it for at least 20 minutes a day, even 10 minutes a day will bring about substantial benefits to your body and state of mind. It will also help you regain homeostasis and lose body fat more easily.

Its amazing what a short period of work-in exercise can do to balance the negative sources of stress, along with reducing stress and appropriate rest could be just enough to help you feel and look great.

Good Luck with your health and fitness goals

Tim Garrett
Healthy 4 U
“Transforming Lives Through Health and Fitness”
Tel: +971 052 699 3955
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