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How To Control Stress-Induced Weight Gain

July 29, 2014, 6:00 PM by Brittany Larson

How To Control Stress-Induced Weight Gain

A research study conducted by Ohio State University finds that stressed women have high levels of hormone in insulin, which contributes to fat storage.

"Everyday life is stressful by definition.  You're in a hurry or you're late for work for whatever reason; there's traffic," Dr. Alla Zamulko said.

Health experts say it's important to recognize the warning signs of stress, which can cause anxiety and eventually lead to weight gain.

"Increasing different hormones and levels of anxiety, I think that all leads to people and women in particularly reaching for high calorie and the wrong food. We all know that we cannot avoid stress," Zamulko said.

"Every once in a while, I will really indulge and love what I am eating because I haven't had it for a long time and then I will go back to like okay I know that's a no, no so I can't have it for a while," Karen Bernner said. 

Karen Brenner says she doesn't have much of a sweet tooth because of how she was raised.

"Years ago when my father was a child my father had diabetes so we just didn't have sweets in the house to tempt him, so I really didn't grow up that way with having a lot of candies or cookies or stuff," Brenner said.

Still, she admits she's willing to give up a sweet treat for something salty.

"Really for me it would probably be more like a baked potato loaded with butter so I would rather have that than a piece of chocolate," Brenner said.

"If you expect you will have an important meeting and it will be stressful it's a good idea to get prepared ahead and to eat healthy food and to see what triggers your stress and if it's preventable if you can illuminate it then certainly you would like to work on this," Zamulko said. 

Rather turning to food to cope with stress, Brenner finds relief in a different companion.

"One thing that really helps me with coping with stress is hugging my dog. I love dogs and they reciprocate much love back to you," Brenner said.

Other ways to cope with stress include not skipping meals, especially breakfast. 

Another helpful tip is to practice relaxation skills such as yoga or meditation.

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