Sad and shocking, the recession is taking its toll on our waistlines. The past year saw an increase of 1.7% in the number of obese Americans. This according to data from Gallup-Healthways as provided to Newsweek:
The stress of worrying about keeping or finding a job, paying bills and keeping a stable home does take a negative toll on one’s health, including weight. “There’s a clear link between stress and weight gain,” says Leslie Heinberg, director of behavioral services for the Bariatric and Metabolic Institute at Cleveland Clinic. “People may be more likely to eat comfort foods or eat things that are higher in fat and calories,” she explains. And, this kind of weight gain can be especially unhealthy: “There’s good evidence that stress hormones may play important role in holding onto fat, especially the much more deleterious visceral fat.”
And a tight budget doesn’t just mean stress eating, it also means we’re more likely to choose foods that are cheaper, which are typically foods that are higher in fat and calories. Fast-food restaurants have reported profits in the face of the recession, with their dollar menus providing attractive options for people looking to save money.
What to do at the supermarket:
May we refer you our Top Ten Tips for Nutritious Shopping in a Recession? These include cutting carbonated soft drinks from your grocery cart, using coupons only for healthy products, working with shopping lists, and learning to cook.
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