Impacts of Stress on Weight Management
Written by Allison Keller, Mayo Clinic dietetic intern
Managing stress is important for your weight management journey. There is a difference between eustress and distress. Eustress can be classified as the “good” stress. This type of stress can be used as motivation and may benefit your health. Distress can be classified as “bad” stress. This stress may come from a negative experience such as losing a job. When we are in distress this may cause weight gain or weight loss. Stress impacts everyone in a different way. Most of the time when one is in distress, they would tend to have a lack of sleep, eat too much or too little, and are not able to manage stress levels.
One step to manage your weight is managing stress.
Tips to lower stress:
- Routine exercise (whatever that may look like for you)
- Create a routine
- Sleep for 7-9 hours a night
- Contact a therapist
- Utilize relaxation techniques
- Set realistic goals for your day
- Manage your time wisely
- Set healthy boundaries in your life with family, friends, work and other commitments
Aspects that may increase stress levels:
- Excessive consumption of screentime
- Excessive caffeine intake
- Too many responsibilities
- Working too many hours or under dangerous circumstances
- Chronic illness
- Major life change (move, new job, loss of a loved one, or divorce)
There are many instances that cause stress. Weight management can be related to stress management. If you can lower your stress, it may be tied to weight loss or weight gain depending on your goals. Finding an activity that reduces stress is key to a healthy lifestyle.
In what ways do you healthfully manage stress?