10 Ways To Stop Stress Hunger
10 things you already know about how to stop craving for food…
“I return from the office. I open the fridge… Something drops on the floor. KIDS! But. It is difficult to see where the item dropped. Something is in the way. I move… Ah! I spy a half open yoghurt pot and the yoghurt has splashed over my shoes and on the floor. I bend down to pick it up. I get out of breath… I squat. Something rips. My CK’s!. Oh blast and I don’t have a clean pair to change into…
I haul myself up and look into the mirror. Hmm. Can’t see the split but who’s mountain is that on top of my legs???”
It’s not your fault. It’s stress eating. “Oh, that’s alright then. Must keep a roof over my head so it goes with the territory. Right?”
Stress eating results in a number of changes to the way the body is structured, not least and the most obvious is your girth, and it can also worsen digestive problems like acid reflux, IBS symptoms, gas, bloating and diarrhea.
“Oh. Well. I do suffer a bit it’s true and I would rather be size 4 than 14 but I’m only having a few nibbles now and again…”
Stress eaters KNOW that they should stop eating, but that’s easier said than done for most. Some may desperately try to resist the beckoning of the refrigerator, pantry or vending machine but then break down in that moment of weakness and give in.
The good news is you CAN break free of stress eating. But first it’s important to understand what’s going on when you instinctively look for comfort food…
There is a protective hormone connection and it stems from the “Fight or Flight” reaction our body is programmed to make. In a dangerous situation, our body gears up for protection by releasing two hormones; adrenaline and cortisol. These hormones mobilise fat and carbohydrates stored in the body for quick energy.
Once the stress is over, adrenaline seeps away but cortisol hangs around for a while to help refuel your body and bring it back to balance. One of the ways it does this is by pricking your appetite and suggests that you replace the carbohydrates and fats you used.
What is the price we pay for chronic stress?
When you are under longstanding chronic stress, your cortisol levels are raised and remain high all the time. This creates a buildup of abdominal fat; our primitive emergency energy supply and you would normally see this happen during the winter months. It also leads to depressed immune function, low thyroid function, problems with controlling blood sugar, impaired memory and concentration, adrenal fatigue “Burnout” and eventually, chronic illness. Nice eh?
With continual stress and high cortisol levels, you are susceptible to conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, blood clots and colon cancer so, we have to break the cycle. This is where we have to make a bit of an effort. No Pain. No Gain…
Here are 10 things that you can easily do:
- Wait 10 minutes before giving in to a craving ~ If you can distract yourself by answering an email, doing a load of laundry, making a phone call, feeding the cat or running an errand, you may forget about your craving. We live in hope…
- One should never go hungry or skip meals ~ You have heard this before I know but hunger can trigger intense cravings for sugar, so be sure to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. If you are busy and miss a meal, take a little snack of raw vegetables.
- And of course, eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables because they are full of antioxidants and phytochemicals that eliminate the free radicals caused by stress.
- Drink green tea ~ Not only is green tea alkaline (which is good for your pH), but it contains the amino acid theanine, which tranquilizes your brain and helps control cortisol levels.
- Turn off the Tele… ~ TV exposes you to endless numbers of food commercials that are specifically designed to trigger cravings.
- Sleep more ~ Fatigue and sleep deprivation lead to carbohydrate cravings because carbs are a major source of energy when you feel exhausted.
- Get some exercise ~ Well, everyone tells you this so, it must be true? Exercise counteracts stress and cravings by releasing endorphins, the hormone that produces good feelings. Walk round the block. do it once per day then twice then three times. Your neighbours will begin to wonder… At how healthy you are beginning to look. Aim for mid day too to get maximum vitamin D from the sun.
- Drink lots of water ~ You have heard this over and over. Every system of your body depends on water to remove wastes, bring nutrients and oxygen to the cells, aid in digestion and maintain normal metabolism. In addition, many people mistake thirst for hunger, so what may seem like a craving to you could be your body telling you to drink more water. You should aim to drink at least 8-10 cups of water a day.
- Eat foods with anti-stress vitamins and minerals ~ These include foods with vitamins A, B6, C and E as well as potassium, magnesium, calcium and zinc. Here are some good sources of each:
- Vitamin A: Carrots, sweet potatoes, greens, bell peppers
- Vitamin B6: Bananas, salmon, potatoes, chicken, turkey and spinach
- Vitamin C: Strawberries, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, oranges, cauliflower
- Vitamin E: Sunflower seeds, almonds, olives, spinach, blueberries, greens
- Potassium: Yams, spinach, avocado, lentils, winter squash, bananas
- Magnesium: Black beans, navy beans, salmon, spinach, sesame seeds, halibut
- Calcium: Greens, sesame seeds, dairy
- Zinc: Lean beef or lamb, turkey, green peas, shrimp, sesame seeds
And the all important number 10: ~ Make sure your digestion is running like a Rolls Royce. All the healthy food in the world will do you and your stress levels no good if your digestion is incomplete and inefficient. Poor digestion not only worsens stress-related problems like acid reflux, gas, bloating and constipation, but it also reduces your ability to absorb stress-reducing nutrients from your foods. So, the hunger bell will continue to toll.
OK. Here comes the pitch. If you are over-weight, you need this programme to give you the recipe for your discipline to work. My website is called Size14to4 because these are actual results. You may also be interested in Sherry Bressica’s “Great Taste No Pain” book as well.
In summary, to clean your system out and reduce your dress size or waist line, go here:
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