The Truth About Cortisol and Stubborn Belly Fat
Hope your having an awesome day! It’s starting to cooler here in Florida and I can finally open the windows enjoy the fresh ocean breezes. I love this time of year!
Anyway, I was reading the book Mastering Cortisol by Marilyn Glenville and I wanted to share a few interesting things about cortisol affect on belly fat and why you may be having a problem getting rid of it.
Remember all those annoying commericals about cortisol and belly fat where they were trying to sell us some useless pills. I always remember thinking what total crap the whole thing was.
Well turns out that there was a lot truth to the commercial, cortisol really does store belly fat.
The useless pills part is still true though :)
What is Cortisol?
Cortisol is commonly called the stress hormone Your body releases cortisol when you are stressed as means for survival. It’s all about evolution.
Millions of years ago when we actually hunted for our food, we had to react quickly to other danger or we would end up being someone else’s dinner . It’s called the “fight or flight response”.
In order to help us survive dangerous situations, our bodies increase cortisol production which in turn increases the levels of fat & sugar in our bloodstream which gives us the energy we need to either fight or run.
When the danger is over and you calm down the extra energy in the form of glucose has nowhere else to to so it gets redeposited as fat. But your cortisol levels will remain high many hours later because your body thinks you need refuel your energy and it does this by increasing your appetite.
Yes, our bodies are incredibly clever. And there is nothing random about where our body chooses to store fat. It chooses our hips and our bellys because it likes to keep fat close to our liver so it can be quickly converted back to energy the next time we are under attack.
The problem these days is that things we stress about are rarely situations where our lives are in jeopardy but our bodies don’t know the difference.
So when we allow day to day activities that aren’t even remotely dangerous stress us out, we are increase cortisol levels which provides us energy we are never going to use so it ends up getting stored as fat.
Best Way To Handle Stress
One way I’ve found to handle my stress is by simply ‘letting go” of things I can’t control. When I feel myself getting really stressed out about something, I ask myself “what’s the worst that can happen and can I handle that?”
Also the best at home workout routines help alot.
The answer is always yes.
Once you realize that the stress you’re feeling isn’t because you’re in a life or death situation and that you’re capable of handling any situation even if it’s not a very desirable one, you will start to master your stress and your happiness.
Running late for appointments always used to stress me out. Now instead of getting stressed when i’m late, I accept that there is nothing I can do about it presently, I accept the consequences whatever they may be ( none of which is life threatening) and I promise to do better next time.
Then I let it go.
You have to be able to ‘let go” of outcomes you can’t control in order to live a truly happy life. We tend to get so caught up in the day to day activities of our lives and let little things bother us that we lose direction of why we are here…
..to be happy…to be strong…to be vibrant…to help others.
So what does all this have to do with belly fat and creating an amazing body & life?
All the best,