Health & Wellness

Stress: The Enemy of Your Waistline & More

stress management, health, total wellness

In life, we have a choice to be happy or unhappy. We also have a choice to decide whether or not some obstacle will affect us slightly or immensely.

Everyone has had to deal with a stressful situation at some point, but what makes us different is how we deal with the stressors that we come in contact with.

Although positive stress can be beneficial to one’s well being, negative stress has the ability to cause great damage to one’s life.

Positive stress, known as Eustress,stimulates chemicals in your brain that helps improve performance. Some examples of positive stress are anticipating graduation, planning a wedding, having a baby, and buying a house.

The good thing about positive stress is that it’s stimulating and is only short lived. On the other hand, negative stress, known as distress, can be very harmful to your health.

However, for the purposes of this post, I am mostly referring to negative stress. Negative stress makes you feel awful and drains your energy.

Prolonged negative stress can even cause mental and physical problems. Examples of negative stress include things like filing for divorce, being hospitalized, dealing with financial problems, and suffering from insomnia.

While all negative stress is indeed not good for your health…chronic stress is disastrous…it is ongoing and can wreak havoc on your endocrine system!

Did you know that there is a link between chronic stress and belly fat?

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Although a lot of people complain about belly fat because of body image reasons, there are also more prominent reasons for concern.

Increased abdominal fat is caused by an excess of cortisol (the stress hormone) that is released during your body’ s natural response to stress…here is where things can get really complicated.

When you carry excess fat in your waistline (which leads to abdominal/central obesity) you increase your risk of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, or stroke!

I especially have to monitor my waistline as well as try to be mindful of the foods that I eat around the time of final exams because many stressors are present.

Are you starting to see any patterns yet? Do you see how this post relates to my previous post? Or maybe, you’re wondering why I’m sharing all of this with you?

It is not only important for you to engage in physical activity, but it is also imperative that you are able to manage stress appropriately!

Achieving total wellness in your life is about learning how to balance. As stated in earlier posts, the first step of being able to live a life of fulfillment and happiness is to work on changing your mindset…change comes by reprogramming your mind.

Believe it or not, your mind is very powerful! Your mind controls your body and not the other way around. Once you are able to start controlling your thoughts your body will follow…your body will have no choice but to function properly once your mind is at ease!

In sum, stress is more than just the enemy of your waistline…in fact, constant stress hinders you from living your purpose! Constant stress is detrimental to your health as well as your very own livelihood!

Negative stress can cause you to overeat or either not eat at all which causes even more problems in the long run. Negative stress can also cause you to worry and lose sleep…and the list goes on and on.

The important thing to note is that you must tackle the stressors in your life! You must do whatever it takes in order to stay in a peaceful state of mind.

So again, in order for you to be able to live a purposeful life and prepare for success, you must first get your health to an optimal level and managing stress appropriately is part of the process. 

When things in your life don’t go as planned, try not to over worry…instead try to focus on your health because your health takes precedence over whatever problem that may arise.

I encourage you to start taking action to help reduce stress in your life today! Here are a few tips that you can try.

  • try not to overbook yourself
  • avoid procrastination (plan ahead)
  • try to get adequate sleep
  • try listening to some calming music
  • increase intimacy (give hugs to those you love!)
  • try out a new painting class
  • learn yoga
  • practice meditating
  • take a hot shower/bath
  • visit a pet store

Additional Resources

Understanding Chronic Stress

Stress Effects: 50 Common Signs & Symptoms of Stress

Stress Effects on the body

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Becoming His Tapestry

Because I am in the process of becoming, of allowing my Master to weave the various threads of my life into His Masterpiece. Proverbs 31:30

Rhea Evangelista

Mental Health Advocate , Marriage & Relationship

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