Stress and Weight Gain

Blog Image: Stress and Weight Gain

Stress can be thought of as the spice of life – the spark that ignites and primes us for each day. Stress we can handle and stress that gets out of hand – stress vs. distress – marks the difference between adrenal balance or imbalance. Adrenals in balance produce enough of the master stress hormone, cortisol, to build and maintain our mental and physical energy, immunities and stress-coping skills. Adrenals under pressure become overworked and out of balance. When that happens, we may run out of steam more easily, sleep fitfully, pack on pounds in our middle, develop allergies or fall prey to every flu bug and virus that comes along.

The Adrenal Glands: Small but mighty

Blog Image: Stress and Weight Gain

The adrenal glands are two tiny pyramids that sit on top of the kidneys and release the hormones DHEA, adrenalin (in an emergency) and cortisol (our get-up-and-go hormone). Hundreds of times a day, these mighty little glands fine-tune our stress-coping skills. When our lives are balanced by optimal nutrition, supplements and enough sleep and exercise, the adrenals perform for us around the clock. When our lives are out of balance and we’re burning the candle at both ends, our adrenal capacities burn out – and so do we.

Stress, weight gain and belly fat.

When stress is prolonged, cortisol levels start to seesaw, triggering blood sugar and insulin imbalances, food and sugar cravings, sleep disturbances, weight gain and the dreaded belly fat. Both high and low cortisol levels create imbalances of other weight-related hormones, impacting testosterone, loss of lean muscle mass, and slowing thyroid function and metabolism – a double whammy when it comes to weight gain. If stress becomes chronic, the adrenals remain in “survival mode,” steadily increasing fat reserves while immunities gradually weaken.

Signs of Adrenal Imbalance May Include:

  • Allergies/asthma
  • Anxiety/nervousness
  • Belly fat
  • Chemical sensitivities
  • Fatigue (morning and/or afternoon)
  • High stress
  • Irritability
  • Lack of energy/burnout
  • Low/no libido
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Sugar cravings
  • Susceptible to illness and infection

If you have two or more symptoms above that have been persistent or troublesome over the last six months to a year, testing your cortisol and other hormone levels could identify imbalances and help to correct them through Metabolic Research Center’s Hormone Optimization Program.

Hormone Imbalance Quiz

This quick quiz will ask several questions to assess whether you are experiencing symptoms that can indicate a hormone imbalance. Let's start by learning more about you.

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What saliva testing can tell you.

Saliva testing of cortisol levels at four points during the day (morning, noon, evening and bedtime) can chart adrenal function and the extent to which your cortisol levels are out of balance. Hormone test results can then serve as a guide to strengthen adrenal balance as part of your weight loss strategy.

Blog Image: Stress and Weight Gain

Metabolic Research Center’s Hormone Optimization Program can help you reach your weight-loss goals with programs that provide a healthy balance of nutrients, whole foods, and supplements. Saliva hormone testing can help detect and correct adrenal imbalances of cortisol that encourage excess weight, particularly belly fat. A wegith loss specialist can provide more information about the full range of support we offer. Contact Us Now!

*The information provided within this article is not to replace a relationship with your Medical Professional. The laboratory services offered are for informational purposes only. It is not the intention of Metabolic Research Center to provide medical advice but rather to provide you with information to better understand your health. Seek the advice of a trained health professional for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.


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MRC of Vancouver started me going in my attempt to loose 30 years of weight gain!! I have been using their program for about 18 months and have actually lost 30 pounds. I have changed the way I eat. I've learned what foods are best for ME. By analyzing my DNA and hormones, they helped me learn to eat what was right for me. I have "tweeked" my purchases and preparation of food to make eating healthy and still fun for me. I eat lots of veggies and salads and include a healthy diet of protein. These are very satisfying. Do I "cheat" now and then? Yes, but I don't like how I feel after eating sugar and lots of carbs so I return to my good foods quickly and continue to see my weight drop. I walk my little dog four times a day and have a part-time job that allows me a lot of movement. I feel so healthy and wonderful. It's easy to continue to eat and live a more healthy lifestyle! When I confessed about eating the wrong "foods", the gals simply encouraged me and gave me fresh ideas to satisfy my taste buds. I always felt I could be honest during my consultations with no fear of being lectured! I plan to continue until I reach my desired weight. I expect to reach my goal by 2017. After I reach my weight goal, I plan to remain in good health with my new found healthy way of eating the calories I need to maintain my proper weight. My Dr. is very pleased at my progress. She wondered how I have lost 30 pounds.


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