Importance of nutrition:
Stress can be both caused and amplified by poor nutrition habits. This can create a vicious spiral of even more stress and even worse eating habits. Stress typically goes one of two ways in regard to nutrition; it leads to comfort eating, typically on high calorie foods leading to weight gain, or it can lead to under eating and excessive weight loss.
Both under eating and over eating then further stresses the body but often in different ways. Excess weight gain leads to chronic inflammation, which if left unchecked precedes the ‘metabolic syndrome’ of high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes. Undereating elevates our stress hormone cortisol, which can lead to disrupted sleep, lower testosterone, influence our immune function and has many other negative health implications.
Although life stress may be unavoidable, we can at least limit its effects by controlling the variables we can have a profound impact over such as diet and exercise. A proper approach to nutrition, including plenty of lean protein, healthy fats, fruits and vegetables will not only help regulate weight, but also provide the right nutrients to reduce the impact of day to day stress on the body.
Antioxidants found in fruits, vegetables and healthy fats help protect against oxidative damage caused by physical and environmental stress and fats and proteins are important in the creation of many different components of our hormonal, immune and central nervous system. Whole grains and fibre promote gut health by providing fuel to our good bacteria; these are also intrinsically linked to both our physical and mental health.
It is for this reason I encourage a balanced approach to nutrition, with lots of lean protein, and whole food ingredients… these will not only make you look better on the outside, but keep you healthier on the inside too.
I am a 41 year old personal trainer based in Poole, Dorset who works with individuals and small groups. We also offer bespoke online nutrition & training programmes through Primitive Performance.