Influence of Stress on Nutrition Goals
Planning and Organization
Stress influences thinking, planning, multitasking…amongst other things. When we are stressed and preoccupied we end up going for the easy fix – like when we forget to pack a snack we go to the vending machine, or forget to pack lunch an go for fast food.
Stress hormones make us want to eat more – usually sugar, chocolate, or any those favorite foods that we usually avoid.
While stress is influencing us to make poor dietary decisions (as well as likely drink more alcohol), it is also reducing our motivation to exercise.
Stress also impacts our sleep. It keeps us up all night and then makes us crave snacks throughout the day to make us think that we have the energy to make it through the day.
Stress Messes With Mind and Body
It becomes a vicious cycle. We set a goal, put it into action, make progress, experience stress, breakaway from our plan, and give up.
Then we likely feel guilty and start over.
In no way are we saying that all stress can be eliminated from our lives. Rather, let’s consider our methods for addressing stressors in support of sustaining our progress toward health goals.