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Stress, specifically chronic stress, is known to lead to weight gain and other health problems. In the fast-paced society we live in, stress is becoming increasingly prevalent. In a 2017 study conducted by the American Psychological Association (APA), 3 out of 4 Americans reported experiencing at least one stress symptom in the last month. Chronic stress may lead to significant weight gain and an increase in abdominal fat due to the over exposure of the stress hormone cortisol. When feeling stressed, our bodies go into a “fight or flight” state, and cortisol is released. Cortisol is an appetite stimulant, which can lead to an increased calorie consumption throughout the day. When under stress, we have a tendency to crave high fat and sugary foods. “Stress eating” may alleviate the feeling of stress by activating the reward center in our brains to make us feel good. The long-term effect of eating to relieve stress is weight gain, increased risk of type II diabetes and an increase in cardiovascular disease.

Stressed Woman
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