Stress negatively affects your metabolism. Life happens….life brings on stress. A certain amount of stress and tension helps you take on challenges and perform better. Too much stress (left unchecked)over a prolonged period is not good and it causes health problems and affects metabolism. Also, some people respond to stress better than others. One person might crumble under the same workload that causes another person to thrive.
Your body’s normal state (homeostasis) is changed by stress. The hormones, adrenaline and cortisol, are secreted in response to a stressful situation. The “fight or flight” response to stress is intended to give you the energy to take on or run away from a particular situation. Stressful situations that go on for months or years signals to your body that the normal state includes excessive amounts of adrenaline and cortisol.
As it relates to metabolism, adrenaline makes the fat cells more efficient at turning fat into energy and speeds up metabolism. On the other hand, cortisol increases the amount of glucose in the blood and creates more energy. If you have an office job, this excess adrenaline and cortisol builds up. Unused excess energy will be stored as fat.
Chronic stress or stress with no end in sight has major health implications. Adrenaline will continue to be secreted but the body and the fat cells will build up a tolerance to it. This means that the fat cells won’t be converted to energy and cortisol will continue to increase glucose in the blood. This means the fat gain and weight gain begins to happen if left unchecked.
Life continally has stressful situations and life sometimes brings unavoidable prolonged stress. Regular exercise helps me to deal with stress and brings my body back to the true normal state (or as close as possible).
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Mark Dilworth, BA, PES
Her Fitness Hut