Stress Management during Medical Weight Loss
Losing weight can sometimes be stressful, but it is important not to let stress get the better of you during your medical weight loss program. Stress can negatively influence your life and possibly lead to weight gain and unhealthy eating habits.
What is Stress?
Stress is your body’s natural reaction to increasing demands and pressures in your life. Your body releases chemicals and hormones to fuel your capacity to respond to stress. Your body is meant to return to a relaxed state once the stress is subdued. However, everyday routines tend to come with an abundance of stressors, like time management, traffic jams, bills and relationship complications. This makes it impossible for your body to naturally relax and shut off the center that is releasing these hormones.
When you are stressed, the following may occur:
- Your blood pressure level rises
- Your digestive system slows down
- Your heart rate increases
- Your immune system is weakened
- Your muscles become more tense
- You experience interference in sleep, or insomnia
That is why, especially during medical weight loss, stress management is so essential. You want your body to be healthy in order to reach your weight loss goals. Also, excess stress may lead to unhealthy coping habits like emotional eating and overeating.
Managing Stress during Medical Weight Loss
The first step in effectively managing stress is to identify and acknowledge times when you feel stressed. Then, find a coping skill that seems to relax you, and do that regularly when you feel stress sneaking up on you. If you can cope properly, you can get your body to relax and avoid any harmful coping habits like emotional eating.
Some healthy ways to cope with stress are:
- Journaling. Writing down your thoughts and feelings during times of stress is a great way to become aware of your specific stressors. During medical weight loss you could also use this as a food journal to prevent you from overeating or from eating because you are stressed.
- Meditation and breathing exercises. Clear your head and relieve yourself from negative thoughts. Take a deep breath and try to be calm and relaxed. Remove yourself mentally from the stressors in your life.
- Yoga. Yoga is great for stress because it offers meditation and exercise that you will need during your medical weight loss program.
- Physical activity. Exercise has been proven to boost moods and is a great way to clear your head. Also, it is a positive influence on your weight loss efforts.
- Creative hobbies. Creative activities like crafting, sculpting or painting are great ways to release negative emotions and relax. Letting it all out on a canvas is a positive and fun way to relieve stress.
- Time management. If time overwhelms you then plan a schedule and try to stick to it. If you have a schedule, you will be less rushed and therefore more relaxed.
The above tips are just some of the ways you can cope with stress during medical weight loss. Find a positive way to cope with your stress and stick with it. You don’t want anything to hinder all of the progress you’ve made in your medical weight loss program. Effectively dealing with stress is another way to make sure that your body is happy, healthy and on the right track towards your weight loss goals.