In economic downturn, many turn to food

The economic downturn results in increased stress, which prompts many people to eat more than usual, a U.S. physician says.

Dr. Kendall-Reed, co-author of The No Crave Diet with husband Dr. Stephen Reed, says many people become more stressed about work stability and the economic downturn and compulsively turn to food.

I’ve been seeing nearly three new patients a day for months, and 90 percent of them have stress-related eating issues, Kendall-Reed says in a statement.

Stress stimulates the hunger center in the brain, destabilizes our blood sugar, makes us resistant to our anti-hunger messengers, and reduces our levels of ‘happy hormone’ serotonin, all of which trigger cravings that inevitably lead to weight gain.

Patients often complain at a time like this is that their diets are not working, Kendall-Reed said.

That’s simply because stress promotes storage of calories, particularly around the midsection, which is the most dangerous place to gain weight and the hardest to remove, Kendall-Reed says.

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