Published: 06/03/2007 - Updated: 07/29/2021
Author: Dra. Loredana Lunadei
When we feel stress, our body reacts secreting a hormone called cortisol. This hormone is an asteroid and is called the stress hormone. Cortisol makes your body produce energy to handle stress. If our cortisol levels are high for several months or years, that causes damage to our body. This affects the immune system, fertility and bones. New studies also show that high levels of cortisol cause memory loss and certain types of diabetes.
Dr. Elissa Epele, addressed in this important study at Yale University, said the study also noted that women with more fat in the abdomen also suffer high casualties in their mood and high levels of stress in their life; according to Dr. Epele, the high level of stress or psychological problems, explains the reaction to the hormone cortisol. Reacting of this hormone causes fat accumulation in the abdomen.
Stress and Belly
This study focused on overweight and thin women who accumulate fat in the abdomen, hips, thighs and waist. This research studies a group of women for several consecutive days and measured reactions to stress.
Hormone cortisol affects the accumulation of fat around the body. According to Dr. Epele, they are all exposed to stress but some people react by secreting more cortisol. But according to Dr. Epele, genes also have an important role.
Lifestyle and age also determine the accumulation of abdominal fat. Activities such as smoking, alcohol and lack of exercise contribute to the accumulation of fat in the abdomen. After menopause, the hormonal change also causes accumulation of fat in the abdomen. Dr. Epele said that a healthy lifestyle, including sleep, exercise and relaxation can reduce levels of cortisol.
According to the study, this also applies to men, but overweight in men is usually in the abdomen and in women before menopause, fat usually accumulates on the thighs.
The study concludes that it is possible that stress produces changes in places of accumulation of fat in women and in men.
Other similar studies also show the same results. A similar study was conducted in Maryland, USA by Dr. Peeke. In this study we conclude that the fat around the abdomen in women older than 40 years is considered dangerous and is the result of a sedentary lifestyle, low estrogen levels and chronic stress. This study considers not only stress reactions but also irritation feeling of discouragement, despair and defeat. These characteristics are reflected in measures of irritability, wanting to control everything and more.
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