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Why Does Stress Make Me Fat


Answers to the top 20 questions about stress.

Recently researcher’s discovered that Cortisol is connect to abdominal fat.

It was then blamed as the latest reason for obesity and then can the pills and

other Fat suppressing products which were said to be miracle products.

“Why does stress make me fat”

Big Claims, Little Proof

After a web search on the subject of cortisol, here are some of the claims you may find:

* Stress makes you fat

* It is what makes you fat

* Fat reducing supplements control stress

* Stress reducing supplements reduce belly fat

* stress reducing supplements get rid of “stress fat”

* fat reducing supplements balance hormone levels that cause stress

*stomach fat reducing supplements increase muscle growth

Unfortunately most of these claims have little to no truth and is simply brilliant marketing.

It is a very important hormone that you must understand if you want to lose weight and get in shape.

Don’t become one of the millions of victims to fall for this latest fad.

The answers to the frequently asked questions in this article will arm you with the science-based facts, while helping you steer clear of the hype-based scams.

What is cortisol?

It is a hormone that is made by your adrenal glands.

It has ability to increase blood glucose levels.

Why does your body produce it?

It is a stress hormone. Your body produces in response to stress, physical, mental or emotional.

This can include low calorie diet, extreme training, lack of sleep and pretty much anything that causes stress on the body.

Trauma, traffic jams and fights with your spouse are included.

(Note: much of the research done on this hormone and stress has been done on recovering patients, and such findings may not carry over to healthy, athletic populations).

What does It do?

It increases energy and physical readiness to handle the stressful situation or threat by increasing the flow of glucose (as well as protein and fat).

How do you know whether your levels are high?

To find that out you would have to see your doctor and get your levels tested.

It’s done by testing your blood but can also be done by Saliva and 24 hour urine tests.

What is a normal level?

Normal levels n the bloodstream are 6-23 mcg/dl But it does depend on what time of the day the test is done.

It is also different for adults than children.

Should you get your levels tested?

As long as you are aware of the factors that produce excessive amounts and take steps to keep it in the normal, healthy range, then testing is probably not necessary.

Is it related to abdominal obesity?

Yes. There is a link between high levels and body fat.

“visceral” abdominal body fat which is stored deeper than regular fat so it is harder to lose.

Visceral fat is particularly unhealthy because it is a risk factor for heart disease and diabetes.

Does it Make you fat?

No, it is not “the thing” that makes you fat.

High levels of the hormone are merely one contributing factor to storage of abdominal fat, not the primary cause.

If is related to abdominal obesity, then will taking a suppressing pill get rid of abdominal (belly) fat?

No. The studies which showed a relationship between cortisol and body fat did not test whether suppressing it removes fat that is already deposited on your body.

Does stress make you fat?

Many people who are stressed out lose weight .

Those who gain do it from “stress eating”, When were stressed we tend to crave fatty foods.

Is it bad for you?

It is a hormone that is essential for life as part of our natural stress response.

To maintain good health you need the proper amount. Having it in excess can be bad for your health.

Cushing’s syndrome is a disease of high levels, while Addison’s is a disease of low levels.

You want to maintain a healthy normal level.

Can suppressing the hormone improve your muscle growth and strength?

High levels can increase muscle protein breakdown and inhibit protein synthesis (building up muscle proteins), so a chronically elevated level is clearly counterproductive to building muscle. Bringing elevated levels back to normal may improve recovery, strength, hypertrophy and performance.

Should you take a suppressing supplement to help you lose weight?

The FTC has filed lawsuits against the makers of Cortislim and Cortistress, charging them with making false and unsubstantiated claims that their products can cause weight loss.

Pills do not make you lose fat. Body fat is lost by creating a caloric deficit through exercise and nutrition.

Should you take a suppressing supplement to help control your stress levels?

There are many herbs you can take which claim to relax you and reduce stress.

However, very few studies exist which have directly tested the effects of these herbs on cortisol levels.

The ideal solution is to reduce the stress or change your perception of the stress to lessen its physical effects.

What should you do if you have a lot of stress in your life?

Try to take steps to reduce the stress in you life, thing like walks and finding time to do the thing you like can help a lot.

One of the best ways to keep hormone levels in the normal range is to reduce stress and allow time for recovery and renewal. There are effective and natural means of reducing stress that don’t cost a penny, including getting out in nature, deep breathing, enhancing sleep quality, relaxation exercises, meditation and visualization-guided imagery. It’s important to develop a calm mind and sense of tranquility.

What’s in those suppressing pills anyway?

Ingredients that are often used in the various product formulations include Epidemium, phytosterols, tyrosine, Branched chain amino acids, ginseng, ashwaganda, astragalus, kava kava, St. John’s wort, Melatonin, SAM-e, Valerian, Gingko Biloba, Phosphatidyl Serine (PS), Acetyl L-carnitine and Glutamine. Reviewing all of these is beyond the scope of this article.

If you decide to take a suppressing supplement what should you look for?

First Carbohydrate consumed with lean protein immediately after training has a suppressing effect but if you want to take a pill look for ingredients like Vitamin C, Phosphatidyl serine, Acetyl-L Carnitine, Glutamine is an amino acid, It’s important to note that the research on some of these substances is often conflicting and inconclusive.

How can you lower your levels naturally?

* Avoid very low calorie diets, especially for prolonged periods of time. Low calorie dieting is a major stress to the body. Low calorie diets increase the hormone while decreasing testosterone.

* Use stress reduction techniques (stress, anger, anxiety, and fear can raise cortisol)

* Avoid continuous stress. Stress is an important part of growth. It’s when you remain under constant stress without periods of recovery that you begin breaking down.

* Avoid over training by keeping workouts intense, but brief (your level rises sharply after 45-60 min of strength training)

* Avoid over training by matching your intensity, volume and duration to your recovery ability. Decrease your training frequency, and or take a layoff if necessary.

* Suppress cortisol and maximize recovery after workouts with proper nutrition: Consume a carb-protein meal or drink immediately after your workout.

* Get plenty of quality sleep (sleep deprivation, as a stressor, can raise cortisol).

* Avoid or minimize use of stimulants; caffeine, ephedrine, synephrine, etc.

* Limit alcohol (large doses of alcohol elevate the hormone).

* Stay well hydrated (at least one study has suggested that dehydration may raise cortisol).


Excessive levels are not good. But the hormone is not inherently bad; it’s a vitally important hormone and part of your body’s natural stress response. It does not make you fat. Stress does not make you fat. Stress may lead to increased appetite… Increased appetite may lead to eating too much… Eating too much makes you gain fat. Make sense?

Source by Jonathan Potkins

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