How Stress Management Aids Weight Loss

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Stress management helps weight loss in many ways. When a person experiences stress, it causes an adrenaline rush as well as an increase in heart rate. When an individual is under chronic stress however, it is a negative state for the body to be in. It is important to decrease stress as stress management helps weight loss and overall well being.

One of the best ways to decrease stress is to begin meditating. Meditation is about focusing intently and when an individual changes their focus, they change their life. There are various forms of meditation that are beneficial. For more information on adding meditation to your life, see www.how-to-meditate.org. Another way to relax is through the practice of deep breathing. Whenever someone is having a panic attack or experiencing anxiety they always take shorter, more rapid breaths. According to Break Through Your Set Point the following is a deep breathing method:

1. Place one hand on your chest and one on your stomach.
2. Slowly inhale through your nose.
3. Feel your stomach expand causing your hand to rise.
4. Slowly exhale through pursed lips.
5. Rest and repeat five to ten times.

Stress management helps weight loss through other means as well. Consider increasing social support. No one likes to feel lonely and isolated, yet many dieters do. There is great benefit in joining Weight Watcherswww.weightwatchers.com or Overeaters Anonymous www.oa.org It would be nice to make some friends on the journey toward healthy lifestyle. Humans are social animals and learn and improve from contact with others.
Another very powerful practice is that of Mindfulness. People rush through their days, going from one task to another with little awareness of what they have done and where they are. Sometimes one completes an entire task while paying no attention to it whatsoever. Mindfulness

addresses this. Mindfulness invites bringing complete attention to the present moment. It involves observing the present moment without judgement. For more information on Mindfulness practice, see www.jimhopper.com.

Finally, an important method of stress reduction to assist weight loss is called Progressive Muscle Relaxation. According to The Structure House Weight Loss Plan the following is a good progressive relaxation:

1. Sit in a chair with a straight back toward the back of the chair. Place your palms down on your thighs.
2. Squeeze hands into fists. Feel the tension. Then relax all the tension in your hands. Notice the difference in how the two states feel.
3. Go through the sequence with feet and hands at the same time. Curl your toes and clench your fists simultaneously. Hold the tension a few seconds and then release.
4. Repeat this also adding upper and lower legs as well as feet and fists. Feel the tension and release.
5. Repeat adding shoulders to upper and lower legs, feet and fists. Feel the tension and release.
All the tension in your body will be gone at this point.

The above are examples of stress management to help weight loss. If these practices are made part of daily life, stress- related emotional eating will decrease. With less stress there will be positive improvement in health and well being.

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