Can stress cause weight gain? Unfortunately the answer is very likely yes, a fact which is stressful in and of itself. Its easy to see why this might be the case. If eating is how you comfort yourself, then it is almost automatic to reach for a yummy treat when stress makes things feel out of control. Or maybe stress causes you to feel overwhelmed and out of control. In that situation any extra effort can seem like too much, especially cooking a healthy dinner when it's so easy to pick up fast food or eat a sandwich and some chips at home. Then there's that issue of exercise. There's never enough time and when you're feeling stressed, time seems to shrink even more. All in all there are lots reasons why stress can lead to weight gain. Fortunately there are some solutions.,
Who would have thought, but it appears to be the case that tea drinking can be a stress relief tool. In a 2010 study at University College in London (UCL) two groups of men gave up their usual caffeinated drinks for six weeks and drank either a fruit flavored beverage with all of the constituents of black tea or a placebo which tasted and smelled the same. The men were subjected to stress and their blood pressure and cortisol levels were measured. While they all showed signs of reacting to stress, for example raised blood pressure, 50 minutes later, cortisol levels in the tea group were down 47% compared to just 27% in the control group. The tea group also reported feeling more relaxed. While Andrew Steptoe, the lead researcher for the study, didn't know what element in tea causes this effect, he did say that tea drinking "may speed up our recovery from the daily stresses in life."
Melatonin is a hormone secreted by the pineal gland and helps regulate sleep patterns. Many people experience difficulty sleeping when they are stressed, and since lack of sleep may promote weight gain, a melatonin supplement which promotes better sleep patterns may also be an aid to weight loss. While melatonin is available in supplement form, one of the best food sources is tart cherries which have quite a bit in just a handful. Adequate levels of melatonin may also be good prevention for depression which is linked to weight gain.
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