Stress and Weight Loss: Destress for Success [E09]

Stress & Weight Loss - Keto Cortisol Podcast Cover
This may come as a surprise, but stress can be the driver behind hormonal imbalances, inflammation, and weight loss struggles! In today's go, go, go society, this is the unfortunate norm that most of us face. Join us for this week's episode as we discuss ways to shift perceived psychological stress to avoid the negative impact to your body composition and overall health. 

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Hey there, Tasha here. Before we jump in to today’s episode, I have some exciting news. My brand spanking new book, KetoA Woman’s Guide and Cookbook, which is a reference guide cookbook and jam packed resources to help women fine-tune. Their approach to keto has been available for pre-order for a couple of months now. And I wanted to share with you just really quick what some of the readers have been saying. Nina says,”This book has everything I’ve been looking for and more. I never fully understood the keto diet until Tasha’s book. It’s not eating bacon and deep frying and butter. It’s finding what works for your body. Macros can be so confusing, but Tasha breaks it down without all the nutritional jargon. It was easy to understand and all of the free resources she provided were beyond helpful. I finally know how to make keto work for me. Thank you so much, Tasha, for making a book that everyone can enjoy. I love hearing that. And here’s what another Amazon reviewer, T Wunder had to say. “I’m only about a third of the way through, but I have to give this book a five star review. Now, I’ve stumbled around and tried Kito before with some success, but this book explains everything and backs it all up with the research the author used.

It’s also easy to read and you feel like the author is your cheerleader. This is going on my shelf along with the art and science of low carbohydrate ass my expert guides. So first off, thank you so much for taking the time to leave those amazing reviews of Keto A Woman’s Guide. What I love most is that these reviews were actually submitted when I first released my book, both for my publisher asked me to do an expanded edition, complete with our recipe section and more visuals. Pretty incredible, right? So if you’re getting started doing Keto and want to step by step, no nonsense guide to make Keto work for you or you’ve been doing Kito for a while and want to hone in on the strategies and tactics that drive even better results. Or you’re tired of one size fits all Keto books, not giving you enough depth and detail to understand how and why you might need to tweak things. This is why I wrote the book. Kito. A woman’s guide and cookbook will help you get laser sharp focus on strategies that work for weight loss, improved fat burning and hormonal balance. And it will also let you know what tactics you can stop wasting your time on.

To be honest, when I wrote this book, I included all the things I wish I knew before starting Keto. I wish I had something like this when I was getting started and trying to figure it all out or even after I started and wasn’t making the progress that I wanted. So here’s the deal. If you’re a woman doing Kito or know someone who is. I want you to head over to Amazon, Barnes and Noble Books a million or your preferred online retailer and pick up a copy. Pre-orders help retailers know that there is interest in a title. So it really helps get the book get seen in search results online and end up on the shelves in physical stores. And once you get your copy.f you could take the time to leave a quick review on Amazon, letting me know how the book has helped you, I would appreciate it more than you’ll ever know. OK. Let’s go ahead and dive into today’s episode. Hey there. Welcome back to today’s episode. As promised, we’re continuing on down our hormone journey. Last week, I geeked out on the menstrual cycle and I will definitely be coming back to this topic in future episodes.

But today, I’m shifting gears and want to talk about stress and the impact stress hormones have on your body composition, weight loss efforts and overall health. I figured it would be a good topic to cover because we’re in the throes of the holiday season. In fact, this episode is scheduled to be released on Christmas morning. And while some people find this time of year to be full of magic and joy. There’s a whole nother group with a totally different perception of what’s going on. And they’re getting really freakin stressed out about it. For every person totally stoked about the festive carols, cozy fireplaces and lively company, there’s another person frantically cleaning up before guests come over panicking because the L-O-L dolls are out of stock everywhere and crossing their fingers that their car doesn’t get declined. At the register. Right. So we can all be experiencing the same thing and have completely different perceptions of what’s going on. And some things that are not stressful to one person could feel like the end. The world to the next person. So you’re probably thinking, what does this have to do with dieting or weight loss? Why are we talking about stress on a Kito podcast? Because perceived psychological stress can influence your hormones, which in turn can impact your weight and overall health. OK. Stress isn’t something that most people give much thought to when they’re trying to change their eating habits or lose weight. But it can. AB So lutely affect your progress and throw things out of whack, OK? A little bit of stress is totally normal, but when you’re chronically stressed out, this can be the driving force behind a series of negative things happening in your body.

The hormone most commonly associated with stress is cortisol and chronically elevated cortisol resulting from high stress loads can be really damaging to your body, contributing to hormonal imbalances and negatively impacting your metabolism. Chronically elevated cortisol can drive insulin resistance and this impairs your body’s ability to effectively burn carbs for energy. And it’s also more likely to promote fat storage. Chronic insulin resistance is also ultimately tied to chronic diseases like diabetes, PCOS, cardiovascular disease, ok. The other thing chronic stress can lead to is leaky gut where your intestinal barrier becomes compromised, allowing things to leak inside your body or leak into your body. And these are things that you don’t want leaking into your body. It’s also called intestine. In testing all permeability, I am having a really hard time seeing intestines. But if you think of your intestinal lining as a tightly boarded picket fence, preventing pests and nosy neighbors from getting into your yard and tearing it up, that would be what your gut should look like. OK. The gut barrier in your intestines should look like that. But if the fence was damaged with big gaps and loose boards, lots of unwanted things would creep in and mess the yard. So that’s basically what’s happening in your gut under high stress conditions. This can cause inflammation and inflammation in and of itself can be really damaging throughout your body, contributing to insulin resistance and also affecting your weight.

OK. Cortisol competes with progesterone, which is the dominant hormone. And the second phase of your menstrual cycle and when cortisol steals this progesterone, this can lead to a lot of female health issues can affect your period, your fertility and your body’s ability to counter estrogen. Remember, progesterone balances out, estrogens effects. It’s like the yin and yang of your menstrual cycle. So if there is low progesterone, this contributes to estrogen dominance, which in and of itself leads to lots of Warnke. Crazy stuff in your body. OK. Without going into a long conversation about that. Low progesterone increases estrogen dominance. Estrogen dominance is not good for your hormonal balance or any of your body’s functions. Basically chronically high cortisol also leads to water retention and fuels fat storage in the abdomen. So this negatively influences your weight, your metabolic health and fat stored in the gut area right around the middle. And that’s actually another source of inflammation in the body. And I know it probably sounds like I’m repeating myself a lot with the insulin resistance, inflammation, oxidative stress and pretty much every podcast episode. But the body’s a system that wants to be in balance. And when something’s off, these negative symptoms crop up. There are clues that are bodies showing us to signal that something’s wrong. OK, and all these things like insulin resistance, oxidative stress and inflammation are all ways that your body’s communicating with you, that there’s an imbalance that needs correcting.

So it’s common and it’ll probably come up a lot in the conversations we have here. Stress also drives emotional eating and binge eating, which of course, can make your weight loss journey. You feel like even more of a struggle because your behavior doesn’t actually match your goals, right. In short, chronic stress will not only negatively influence your ability to lose weight, but it can also bog down your health and other areas. So what in the heck are you supposed to do about this when it comes to reducing stress? There’s lots of things that you can try, but the most important thing to do is try to change your perception. Remember, we don’t all react to each situation or scenario the same what others perceive as. Stressful may not be stressful to us and vice versa. So with these stressful scenarios, ask yourself why you feel stressed, because your thoughts drive your feelings and your feelings drive your action or inaction. And a lot of times you can’t change the situations or events that are happening to you that are causing stress. Right. You don’t get to erase the holiday season from happening every year just because it’s stressing you out. You can only change your perception of what’s going on. And you’ll hear me say this a lot, a lot, because it’s something that I preach daily. I think it’s really important. It’s something I preach to my kids. I use it with myself a lot. And you aren’t in control of everything, and that’s OK.

But what you are in control of is how you respond to the things that are happening to your thoughts. OK. So that’s where you start changing your thoughts. And if you’re stressed out by doing a Kito diet or dieting, it’s in general. Ask yourself why this applies to every aspect of your life, not just eating behavior is not just the holidays. Not just Kito. Like if you were to tell me, oh my god, doing Kito stresses me out. I’d say, why? And maybe you’d say Because I feel like I have to do everything perfectly and I don’t want to mess this up. That thought, that belief that you have to be perfect or that you could even mess this up. Those are reflections of what you think and believe that could be really holding you back, OK. And those kinds of things are not motivating or fueling your your progress. They’re limiting you from learning and limiting you from taking imperfect action towards your goals. If you change your thoughts about this kind of stuff, whatever it is that stressing you out, your feelings and actions will fall into line. Your thoughts drive your feelings and actions. And if you change your thoughts, you can change the way you feel and the way you take action. And I know that this is a lot easier said than done. I know that this takes practice. Of course, most people can’t just go up. I’m happy now. I’m not stressed. You really do need to work on this.

But this is the key. This is at this. The root of what’s driving your feelings is changing your thoughts. Okay. And ways to do this. You could journal, meditate. Positive affirmations. These are all great ways to really get in tune with your thoughts. You know, you don’t always stop and think about what you’re thinking, right? So if you take intentional time to practice this, you’ll see results. You can take some time out of your day just to blow off steam and get clarity during a walk, a relaxing yoga session. You know, head to the gym. If you enjoy that kind of thing. Another thing. Talk to a counselor or a friend. Consider seeing a therapist or maybe a coach. Like a life coach or a health coach. Somebody that can talk you through this process that is familiar with how your thoughts drive your feelings and behavior. Just getting an impartial party or somebody that wants to help you succeed can be a tremendous help to, you know, stepping outside of your limited worldview and how you perceive things. I’m serious. If you can find a way to have more control over your reactions to stress and how you perceive stress in general, you will be more successful in your efforts in every facet of your life. This applies to your personal relationships. This applies to your job performance or your business. OK, not just Kito, not just dieting, not just looking indifferent. Right. Not changing your body composition. Anything in your life is affected by this. OK.

And you can see major, major improvements with a small shift. It’s all mindset. Get to the bottom of your feelings. Ask yourself why. Why are you feeling so stressed and work towards changing that perception to really get at the root of it? You might need to ask yourself why. A few times I’m stressed because there’s gonna be loads of dessert at this big event. And I would ask you, why does that stress you out? Well, it stresses me out because I don’t want to cheat on my diet. I’d say, why does that stress you out? You’d say something like, because I don’t trust myself around food. And if I cheat on my diet, I’ll ruin all of my progress. So let’s stop there. What if instead of worrying about what’s out of your control, like the fact that there’s. Thedesert present and the what ifs how you might potentially react to respond, what if you shifted your thoughts around all of this instead of your thoughts being. I don’t trust myself around food or if I cheat on my diet, my progress is ruined. Your thoughts are moral, hung the lines of I’m fully in charge of what I choose to fuel my body with and I’ve made a lot of progress through eating healthy. One dessert won’t stop me. See how that small shift in thinking sets a completely different stage for what you feel and who going into that situation.

Guess what? You get to choose what you think. OK, how cool is that? So if you’re speculating and guessing and driving yourself wild with hypotheticals and what ifs, stop. Please stop doing that. You can. You can choose to think positive and feed those feelings and actions. Or you can choose to think negative and feed those feelings and actions. There’s a parable that my partner uses a lot when in talking about this, and I think it’s so appropriate for this discussion. So I want to share it with you here as we come to the end of today’s episode in the story. The elder is telling his grandson about the battle within people. There is a battle that goes on inside people. The battle is between two wolves inside us all. One is evil. It’s anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false, pride, superiority and ego. The other is good. It’s a joy. Peace. Love. Hope. Serenity. Humility. Kindness. Benevolence. Empathy. Generosity. Truth, compassion and faith. The grandson thought about it for a minute, and then asked his grandfather, which will Flynns. And the grandfather simply replied, The one you feed. And with that, I will leave you. Stay positive. Feed the good, Wolf. And until next time.

Thank you so much for tuning into this episode of the Ketogasm podcast. You are awesome. I really hope the shows added value to your Kito journey. Making big changes to your eating habits can be a little tricky, but if you’re taking the time to listen and learn about Kito, you’re well on your way. You got this. Be sure to visit Ketogasm dot com for the show notes with full transcripts, references and resources to help you out, including a totally free course called Halo Kito. It’s helped over seventy five thousand people start Kito with confidence. I’ll see you in the next episode by.

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Welcome back to this week’s episode of Easy Keto with Tasha! This week’s episode will continue down our hormone journey. We’ll talk about the stress that comes with dieting and how to deal with it, so that you can find success in your weight loss journey!

Keto: A Woman’s Guide and Cookbook

As you may have heard, my new book is coming out super soon! This book focuses entirely on women on keto. Whether you haven’t quite started your diet yet, or you’ve been on keto for years, women everywhere will find a plethora of information and resources that will help fine-tune and perfect their diets.

Keto: A Woman’s Guide & Cookbook is currently available for preorder! Grab your copy now, as books are shipping out January 14, 2020. That’s right around the corner! Preorders are super awesome and help the book get noticed by retailers; so if you’re thinking about it, jump on it now!

Once you’ve got your copy, don’t forget to leave a review on Amazon! I would love to hear how this book has helped your keto journey.

Stress & Weight Loss

Stress is a major issue that comes with dieting and weight loss. This impact on your stress hormones can affect your body composition, weight loss efforts, and even your overall health.

Stress can be especially tricky because we all have unique perceptions to what is going on in our lives. Something that is insignificant to one person can feel like the end of the world to the next. And when it comes to dieting, this perceived psychological stress can influence your hormones; in turn, this can impact your weight and overall health.

Most people don’t put too much thought into their stress levels when changing their dietary habits or attempting to lose weight. But maybe they should! There is a level of stress that can be considered normal; being chronically stressed out could be causing a series of negative outcomes with your health.

Keto and Cortisol

Cortisol is the hormone most commonly associated with stress, and it absolutely plays a part in your weight loss journey. When cortisol levels are chronically high, it can cause severe damage to your body.

Chronically elevated cortisol can:

  • Contribute to hormonal imbalances.
  • Negatively impact your metabolism.
  • Drive insulin resistance.
  • Impair the body’s ability to effectively burn carbs for energy.
  • Promote fat storage.
  • Lead to water retention.
  • Cause leaky gut, where your intestinal barrier becomes compromised.

As you can see, it is important that your cortisol levels stay manageable. When they aren’t managed, your stress can severely impact your weight loss abilities. If you’re wondering why you aren’t seeing certain successes on keto, elevated cortisol might be the cause!

Cortisol vs. Progesterone

Cortisol competes with progesterone, which is the dominant hormone. As you might recall, progesterone is the main hormone during the second phase of the menstrual cycle. The competition between these hormones can lead to cortisol stealing the progesterone. This can lead to a variety of health issues in females, including problems with your period, fertility, and your body’s ability to counter estrogen.

Remember, progesterone works in a balance with estrogen. A lack of progesterone can cause estrogen dominance. As we discussed in last week’s episode, this hormonal balance is necessary to keep your body functioning properly. Hormones that are out of balance because of stress can absolutely be affecting your weight loss progress!

Stress & Emotional Eating

Just as stress can impact your weight loss capabilities, it can also actively cause you to gain weight. Stress can be a major driver of emotional and binge eating.

It’s a vicious cycle. You eat your comfort foods because you’re feeling stressed out; then, you get even more stressed out because you’re not meeting your dietary goals. You continue this pattern, your hormonal balance gets completely out of whack, and now your goals feel impossible.

Mindset Shift to Manage Stress

The number one most important thing you can do to reduce your stress is to CHANGE YOUR PERCEPTION. Remember, we all perceive and react differently to stressful scenarios. If you’re finding your stress is getting in the way of your weight loss progress, it’s time to make some changes.

When faced with a stressful situation, start by asking yourself WHY you feel stressed. Your thoughts drive your feelings, and your feelings drive your action or inaction. You might not be able to change whatever situation is causing you stress, but you can always change the way you perceive it!

Reduce Stress for Weight Loss Success

You are in control of your thoughts, so start by changing those thoughts. If you’re stressed out because of your keto diet, it’s time to figure out why.

It’s definitely easier said than done, but you have to change the way you think. If you’re stressing about your diet, you’re most likely limiting yourself from learning and from taking imperfect action towards your goals. Your physical being is a work in progress; why would your thoughts and feelings be any different?     

Ways to Help Shift Your Thoughts:

  • Begin journaling
  • Practice meditation
  • Use positive affirmations
  • Set aside time to blow of steam and gain clarity
  • Take a walk or opt for a yoga session
  • Talk to a counselor or friend
  • Consider seeing a therapist or a life coach

A small shift can cause major improvements. Give yourself the chance to focus on the positive. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how reducing stress improves your weight loss journey!

Further Resources

Menstrual Cycle Sabotage: Hormones & Dieting [E08]
Gaining Weight on Keto [E07]
Keto Holiday Survival Guide: Tips, Menus, & Recipe Ideas [E04]


0:00 – Keto: A Woman’s Guide and Cookbook
3:54 – Stress & Weight Loss
5:43 – Keto and Cortisol
7:27 – Cortisol vs. Progesterone
9:10 – Stress & Emotional Eating
9:39 – Mindset Shift to Manage Stress
10:49 – Reduce Stress for Weight Loss Success

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Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be incredibly grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

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1 Comment

  • Awesome post, it has really helped me get over the tough side of the keto diet. I also read somewhere that having friends also doing keto can really help boost your psych.

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