Just the word ‘stress’ alone can make you feel stressed out. If you’re trying to lose weight, stress is the last thing you need. Not only is it harder to stay away from sugary and fatty foods when you’re stressed, research actually shows that it is harder to lose weight when you’re stressed out. Fatigue is a feeling of tiredness.
Symptoms and Causes of Stress and Fatigue
Fatigue is a feeling of exhaustion, lethargy, tiredness which is distinct from stress and weakness. Unlike weakness, stress, fatigue can be alleviated by periods of rest. Fatigue can have both physical and mental state of being tired and weak. Physical and mental fatigue are different, the two can exist together – if a person is physically exhausted for long time, they will also be mentally tired.
Did you know that stress is related to 7 of the 10 most deadly diseases in the United States? Think heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Of course, we have lots of stress factors in our daily lives, like work, the economy, money and family problems.
Stress is unhealthy, let that be clear. In addition to all of these psychological factors that can cause stress, you might have physical things that cause stress without you even knowing. For example, poor sleep is a major stressor on your body yet most people report not getting enough sleep – they don’t think it’s that important or just don’t know how much of an impact sleep can have on your well-being.
In addition to mental and physical stressors, sensitivity to certain foods, blood sugar dysregulation, not getting enough water and poor air quality can all cause stress.
How your body responds to stress?
Cortisol, the so-called stress hormone, is released when your body receives a stressor and acts almost like a type of adrenalin. If you’ve heard of stress-hormone before, you probably know that it is bad for fat loss. Cortisol is a diurnal hormone, which means your levels of cortisol should peak in the morning (to help give you energy for the day) and slowly drop down as the day progresses so you can fall asleep at night and recharge for the next day. Basically, cortisol is the hormone of energy and being alert.
In a normal stress hormone cycle, cortisol will help burn fat as the day progresses. But if your cortisol cycle is not in balance, it will actually help to make cells less responsive and the fat won’t be burned as easily. If you’re in the department of people that ‘need’ coffee in the morning to wake up, there’s a big chance your cortisol levels are not as they should be.
Cortisol and fat loss
As mentioned above, cortisol makes cells less responsive, which can make it harder to lose weight. The second way coritsol can make it harder to lose weight is by increasing inflammation. Different types of fat in your body react differently. Your body will store more visceral fat (the type of fat you can grab) and it will be harder to lose weight. Visceral fat releases the same inflammatory signals as stress hormone does. In short: stress signals increase the likelihood of storing more fat.
Stress & Fatigue Treatment
Fatigue include inflammation, chronic pain, hormonal changes, anemia, poor sleep, depression and stress. If you’re very stressed out and have trouble losing weight, even after trying time after time, your cortisol levels might be the culprid. It can be beneficial to skip the coffee in the morning, exercise regularly and get enough sleep. As well as spending time away from work and other stressors to make sure your stress levels aren’t through the roof.