The Visual Weight Loss System - VEEP

Carbs and Stress Eating

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Weight gain from stress related eating is an epidemic.

Here we help you understand how carbs act as an opiate during times of stress, and how you can avoid this weight loss hazard.

Your workday goes on, stress builds up, and you wind up munching your way through the problem. Sound familiar? If you think you are just a compulsive eater, you can now give yourself a break. There is an actual physiological mechanism at work from eating carbs during times of stress that helps to calm and relax you.

Here we look at a brief description of how carbs act to opiate the brain during times of stress and what you can do to keep from carb binging.

High cortisol and low serotonin levels can result from sustained stress. Recent research has now revealed why carbs are so important in this equation.

New research shows that sugary carbs during times of stress act like an opiate by increasing serotonin.

Your serotonin levels are maintained by a ratio of tryptophan to Neutral Amino Acids ( LNAA).  During stress, ingesting carbs significantly increasing Tryptophan/LNAA ratio and thus increasing serotonin.

Additionally your brain runs on glucose or blood sugar. During demanding activities, your brain needs all the glucose it can get.  If you are low in blood sugar during times of stress, you are already at a mental disadvantage.

What is common today is nighttime stress induced binging from a combination during the day of stress and fasting. This results in high cortisol levels by the evening, coupled with a high demand for energy from the brain. The result is over eating at night.


1.    Get a good salad in at lunch high in starchy/fibrous vegetables like spinach and green beans. The high starch combined with fiber gives a long slow release of glucose through out the afternoon, giving your brain the glucose it needs.

2.    Supplement with a shot of whey protein isolate/concentrate during the afternoon. New research shows the high alpha lactalbumin content in whey has the same effect as carbs on Tryptophan/LNAA ratio