Combine the stress and anxiety Americans have experienced due to the COVID pandemic with extreme social distancing and long periods of sheltering in place and you have a recipe for stress eating. The unhealthy habit has been on the rise, and the waistlines and health risk of Americans are increasing across the country. 76% of Americans have gained up to 16 pounds since March, according to a recent study.
Chronic anxiety, stress and depression, all of which are exacerbated by the pandemic, can also trigger emotional eating. Although we know it is essential to maintain healthy eating and habits, especially amid a global pandemic, it can be challenging.
The body produces high levels or cortisol – known as the stress hormone – in response to chronic stress. Cortisol triggers cravings for unhealthy foods – whether they be sweet, salty or fried – as it looks for a quick burst of energy and pleasure.
Stress affects three aspects: your body, your mood and your behavior. Each of those can play a role in the overall health and wellness of your body. One of the main things stress can cause you to do is overeat, leading to many adverse health concerns.
Some of the adverse effects from overeating can cause further health concerns, such as:
- Weight gain and obesity
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Heart disease
- Emotional and mental distress
The path to curbing emotional eating urges and weight loss begins by finding a way to handle the stress. Both meditation and floatation therapy significantly improve stress management.
Meditation has innumerable benefits, which is why it has become one of the most popular ways to work as a stress reliever for people of all ages. Some people have found that it works best in combination with several other forms of stress relief. It can become part of your daily routine and work as a technique to recenter yourself and reverse your body’s stress response to physically relax. Studies have shown that a form of meditation can even be used to manage weight loss and healthier eating.
Float therapy addresses the two main requirements to break unhealthy habits such as stress eating: motivation and focus. Since floating is done in a reduced external stimulus environment, the brain can create positive thought patterns while in a meditative state. Additionally, float therapy makes chemical changes in the body to promote healthy weight loss. A 60-minute float session can reduce adrenaline, lactate, cortisol, and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH). These stress-related hormones are replaced with endorphins, enabling individuals to leave the float tank feeling great. Floatation therapy also reduces blood pressure and improves sleep, which is crucial for maintaining whole health and promoting weight loss.
If you’re ready to take a step towards a healthier you, book a float therapy session and experience its healing properties for yourself! Visit True REST Float Spa to find a location near you!