Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Weighty Issues

Weighty issues

I read an article Sunday that asserted that the relationship between stress and weight gain is stronger than we thought. It’s not only that people eat more during times of stress. And is there someone out there who does not experience stress during the “holiday season?” A recent study has revealed that mice under stress gain extra weight even if their calorie intake is the same as the mice without stress. So even if you do not eat more, you may gain weight!! That is true! Think about the skinnies you know who eat so much more than the chubbies you know. IT’S NOT THE CALORIES!!!

Another study showed that if premature babies are given the same amount of formula at every feeding, the ones who are physically touched more often gain more weight in the same amount of time. This is a desirable thing for premature babies. It means that Touch, not Food was the significant factor in development.

Stress causes fat cells to grow and multiply regardless of calorie intake. And this fat usually is stored around the waist, which is the most dangerous place for it to be, since it increases the risk of heart disease and other medical conditions.

Exercise lowers the hormones associated with stress. So does relaxation. So does hypnosis. Self-hypnosis done on a regular basis, at least once per day, has the following benefits:

Physiological changes such as decreased metabolism, heart rate, and breathing rate, in addition to distinctively slower brain waves.
Emotional changes such as feelings of calm and a decrease in anxiety.
Behavioral changes such as better sleep, more energy and improved concentration are also reported.

I have read about some studies which show that relaxation, such as hypnosis or meditation, can be used to lower blood pressure when done twice daily (for only 15 minutes)!

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