Body fat and stress

We usually perceive body fat in general, specifically it's excess amount, as a real aesthetic defect. Whereas, it's also good to know that body fat considerably influences the functioning of human body and often worsens the problems with body mass and composition.

“Help, I'm fat and ugly!”

Simply looking into the mirror or a problem with putting on the favorite pair of trousers, which occurred to be too small, may be very stressful for people who are dissatisfied with their body composition. It's worth underlining that stress in such situations doesn't have to be bad – it can be a strong motivation trigger to change the current way of eating and lifestyle. Another matter is that stress sometimes goes beyond the adaptive possibilities of the body and contributes to creating serious disorders, such as depressive states, depression, body dysmorphic disorder, eating disorders and others. That's the reason why it's important to appreciate and accept own body – regardless its size. When you have constructive and healthy attitude, you can do a lot. Breaking down or falling into extremely negative emotions are only ways of undermining your self-esteem which make it much harder to work on the body aesthetics.

“I got stressed, so I have to eat something”

But the “something” are usually low-quality food products, such as sweets or fast food in the amount much bigger than symbolic. It allows you to feel relaxed for a short while, but as a long-term result, they make the frustration worse, remorse appears and makes the problem with inappropriate body mass and composition worse. Eating everyday stress, paradoxically, leads to creating further stress – which is additionally exaggerated by the feeling of being stuck in the vicious circle, from which we are not able to come out. In such situations, you have to act on many levels – order the matters connected with menu, make it valuable concerning nutritious content and attractive -concerning taste. Another matter is the possibility of managing stress – despite appearances, you can learn that, you can work on it – by changing the attitude towards yourself and the world around you, by finding time to relax not connected with eating (e.g. physical activity), searching help from professionals.

Body fat and overeating

Another issue, which isn't taken under consideration quite often, is the metabolic activity of the body fat itself – without going deeply into details, it's good to realize, that the fact of having excess amount of body fat modifies the mechanisms connected with feeling stress. It occurs, that overweight and obese people, because of hormonal activity of body fat, may be more prone to the activity of stress factors and have more difficulties with coping with them, comparing to people who have normalized body mass and composition. Whereas, intensified stress influences the inclination to emotional eating, increases the risk of overeating, makes the feeling of helplessness stronger, drives frustration and guilt – as you can see, the vicious circle mechanism is more complicated than you could think it is.

How to deal with vicious circle?

Fight with excess amount of body fat may be challenging, that's why it's good to approach this matter methodically and thoughtfully. Acting on the basis of spontaneity and bursts not well-matched to the abilities and needs of the body, usually ends up with failure. It's good to plan the strategy thoroughly – remembering about the nutrition and training. Support from the closest surrounding is also important, as well as proper motivation and engagement.


Stress is an indispensable element of life – its excess amount and difficulties with controlling it may make everyday existence much harder and negatively influence health and shape. Difficulties with managing stress may be the result of excess amount of body fat gathered in the body – it is another reason to work on your body and change current lifestyle and way of eating.