Type 2 Diabetes – How Do Stress And Weight Relate?

Type 2 Diabetes – How Do Stress And Weight Relate? – Stress is often ignored as a factor in overweight and Type 2 diabetes. How does stress add to these health problems? When people feel stressed, their eating habits almost always slide and their body works less effectively in general.
Stress is a road block: Your stress levels and your weight are bound together like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Stress causes your body to get fatter and weaker. This happens because the stress response has a series of chemical processes associated with it, but the effect is consistent overall. The more you are consistently stressed, the less effectively your body works. The cycle can quickly spiral out of control, and leave you obese almost before you realize anything is wrong. Your stress level and your weight go hand in hand… a match that was most definitely not made in heaven.
How does your body know what to do? Stress is nothing more than an extended duration “fight or flight” response. When you face stimuli that scares you, you go into the mode of either wanting to fight it or run away from it. Now, when our ancestors faced monstrous critters, this served them well. It undoubtedly saved billions of lives across the generations leading up to the present day. However, you can not run from your boss and expect to escape your performance assessment. You can not expect to beat the IRS into submission with a club!
The problems of the modern world are far more logical in nature. But unfortunately, our bodies just do not realize things like this. Our bodies seriously believe that we are constantly facing life and death struggles against monsters and natural disasters left and right.
Less muscle, more fat: This “fight or flight” response releases a chemical known as cortisol into our bloodstream. Cortisol breaks down muscle tissue, which is a liability in a time when food is scarce. Diabetics need this muscle though to store blood sugar which is released from the bloodstream during physical activity. As well, every pound of muscle burns 50 extra calories per day, even if you aren’t really doing anything.
Before there were buffets on every corner and quite possibly before they invented obesity, burning calories really wasn’t within the realm of most people’s interests. Seriously, can you imagine a fat cave person? People were just too active before the modern world and all the “time-saving” machines that take more time when they fail.
Along with cortisol, stress also increases the secretion of insulin. Both these hormones work together to promote the formation of belly fat, contributing to both overweight and Type 2 diabetes.
Help yourself: Stress can also cause you to do things to calm yourself, whether they actually help your lot in life or not. Things like not sleeping and eating to excess do not help you in the quest to lose weight. In many cases, they actually pile on the useless pounds or kilograms. Since fat tends to be a stressor itself, this just takes a problem and makes it even worse.
So you need to get plenty of sleep (7 to 8 hours a night), and find ways to calm yourself. Some people practice deep breathing, meditation or yoga (or even all three) to get themselves calmed down. Other people simply laugh at the silliness of life… unless something will cause serious damage, it can usually just be “fixed” with a little calm effort.
Be like a watch maker, and keep the gears of life taut, but never too tight to move smoothly. Keep on keeping the stress under control to prevent it from becoming another health risk for you and your weight.