‘Long-term stress vijftigplusser can cause obesity’

‘Long-term stress vijftigplusser can cause obesity’

People who suffer from chronic stress would be more likely to develop obesity.

That according to a study published in Obesity below 2,500 British men and women aged 54 years and older.

Scientists from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing names for the research, a tuft of hair of each participant. From her being the amount of the stress hormone cortisol.

The harvest was two inches long, which is approximately equivalent to two months of hair growth. Therefore, the cortisol and so stressgehalte of the last two months reading.


Lead researcher Sarah Jackson found a correlation between a greater amount of cortisol and a wide waist circumference, and body mass index (index of the relationship between length and weight displaying). “These results are convincing evidence that chronic stress is associated with a higher level of obesity,” said Jackson.

During stress, the amygdala, the emotional alarm bell in the brain, is more active and makes sure that there are all kinds of release of substances that the body in the highest state of preparedness. Cortisol is one of the substances that increases during a reaction and is therefore used as a ‘stressindicator’.

This ensures more supply of glucose to the brain, so the body is in a stressful situation better to handle. The release of cortisol is triggered by receptors that reside in the abdominal fat, which may be an explanation for the changes in weight that cortisol can cause.

More research

Further and more detailed research should be the relationship between cortisol and obesity to determine. The cause and effect relationship can also be the other way around: persons with obesity would be more stress because of, for example, medical consequences they experience as a result of their overweight.

The researchers will the study therefore continue and the weight and cortisolgehalte of the participants every four years to capture.

This is not the first study showing that cortisol and obesity are related. From research of the Erasmus Medical Centre came in October, shows that children with large amounts of cortisol in the blood almost ten times as often obese as children with low cortisolspiegels.

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