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Unsuspected causes of weight gain


Do you think weight gain is caused only by an excess of food and not enough physical activity? Or do you think it could be attributed to other unsuspected factors? I invite you to think about it as you read this article.

1. Sleep
First of all, you need to know that many different hormones have an influence on our feelings of hunger and satiety. Among them are ghrelin, which stimulates appetite, and leptin, which suppresses it. When we don’t get enough sleep, our bodies produce more ghrelin and less leptin. The consequence is that we eat more!

What can you do? :

  •  Allow yourself at least 8 hours of sleep every day.
  •  When your days seem too short, sacrifice unimportant activities such as watching television or browsing the internet rather than cut on your sleep. Sleep is not like a bank from which we can draw time without any after-effects!
  •  Before going to sleep, limit your intake of stimulating foods and drinks such as coffee, teas, energy drinks, chocolate, cacao or cola.

2. Stress
Eating is not only useful to fulfill our need of energy, carbs, protein and fat. Eating can also be a way to have a good time and treat ourselves, especially when really fat or sweet food is involved! These foods stimulate our brain’s pleasure center and give us satisfaction and well-being. Therefore, it is no surprise that we turn toward ice cream when we feel anxiety, grief, or when going through a rough patch!

What can you do?:

  • Find comfort elsewhere: read a good novel, go take a walk outside or do some window shopping! There are plenty of ways to relax!
  • Do not feel guilty if you yield to the temptation of fat or sweet foods: this can only make your stress worse and push you into eating a whole pecan pie!
  • Keep a log in which you will mark down what you eat and how you feel. On one hand, this will allow you to know yourself better, and on the other, it will help you identify the situations in which you are more prone to eat.
  • Take frequent breaks when performing a demanding task, and eat nutritious snacks.
  • Practice regular physical activity: activity triggers the release of endorphins, which create a feeling of relaxation and well-being.

And now, how would you answer the first question?

By Vanessa Martin

Vanessa Martin

A newcomer to Nautilus Plus, Vanessa Martin holds a degree in nutrition from the Université de Montréal and is a member in good standing of the Ordre professionnel des diététistes du Québec. She also works in the hospital setting and loves to blog in her spare time. Passionate and versatile, Vanessa plans on enhancing her knowledge in the field of psychology with an eye to better guiding and motivating the habit-changing endeavors of her clients. Member of a running club, she enjoys taking part in the competitions organized in her area. Vanessa is currently training for a 21 km race and would like to run her first marathon!

Unsuspected causes of weight gain is a post from I'm taking charge. I'm taking charge is a blog that aims to help people in their journey to fitness through articles on training, nutrition, motivation, exercise and healthy recipes.
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