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Feeling Stresssssed?

Stress can have a real impact on your work and your relationships. Did you know it can also impact your weight loss success? When you are stressed, you may eat more or eat foods that are less healthy and not on your plan. Stress can also impact your ability to sleep, your energy levels and your mood --- all important components toward your overall health and potentially your ability to lose weight.

When you are feeling stressed, stay on track by:

1. Taking a walk -- even a short one. Take note of the sights, sounds and smells of your surroundings. Even short bouts of movement can help reduce the feelings of stress.

2. Meditating or doing breathing exercises. Inhale deeply, hold for 4 seconds, then exhale for a full 4 seconds. Pause for 4 seconds, and repeat. As you breathe, picture your stress flowing out of you with each exhalation.

3. Stretching. In addition to helping to relieve anxiety, stretching improves your flexibility, relieves muscle tension and helps to distract you from the stress of a situation until you feel more grounded.

4. Regrouping. Step away from a stressful situation for a few moments. Drink a glass of water or spend a moment focusing on something you enjoy such as a pet, favorite quote or uplifting song.

Taking a few moments to center yourself can help you stay focused on your goals, reduce your feelings of stress and prevent you from having a lapse into unhealthy eating. Take time each day to recognize and reduce stress from your environment.