WEIGHT MANAGEMENT ∙ 2 minute read

How work stress can cause weight gain

By Joe Young | Medically reviewed by Dr Luke Pratsides

Deadlines got you stressing? Commute got you sweating? Happens to the best of us. Work stress is a normal part of life. But how you manage it determines your health as it’s a proven factor behind weight gain

Saying so long to the Sunday Scaries will benefit not only your mental health but also your waistline.

What’s work-related stress?

That feeling when it’s all too much. Overwhelming workloads, presentations, job security, a lack of support, and more. They all blend together for a horrific cocktail of stress and unwanted weight.

It’s at these points where it’s tempting to reach for food as a relief. Be it a packet of biscuits at your desk, a few pints after work, or a high-calorie lunch. The office fruit bowl is easily ignored. 

Stress and weight 

But if you let stress win, it’ll control you. Stress leads to bad decisions, as well as burnout. And of course, comfort eating can easily result in weight gain

Thankfully, there are many ways to simmer down your stress levels. 

4 tips to beat work stress

1. Get a good night’s sleep

A good night’s rest (at least 7 hours of sleep) is key to your health. Waking up on the right side of the bed will reduce your stress for the day. Stress can lead to sleep problems, whilst lack of sleep can lead to stress. Sleep better. Improve your day-to-day. 

2. Do more exercise

Regular exercise reduces stress hormones and stimulates endorphins. Get off a stop early before work. Walking - especially outside - gives you a boost. Or try taking the stairs instead of the lift. There are many simple ways to get active in your day. 

3. Practice mindfulness 

If you learn what triggers your stress it’ll be easier to prevent. When you feel overwhelmed, instead of concentrating on negative feelings, create space between you and these thoughts. A simple way to do this is to focus on nothing but your breathing. Breathe in. Then out. Take in the now. 

4. Don’t take it home

You don’t want to bring stress home. It’s meant to be where you relax. Ask your manager for help when you’ve got too much on or even reward yourself for a job well done with a holiday. Feeling refreshed will pay dividends in the long run. After all, your mental health plays a key role in your physical health.

If none of these methods are for you, why not try a more unconventional way to release stress?

Stress Support

Stress Support

Stress less. Improve your life.

The numan take 

Work stress is unavoidable, but there are ways to manage it. It’s better to face your problems head-on with solutions, rather than letting them fester. Turn the tables and defeat stress. It will make a big difference to your health, particularly your weight.