How Stress Causes Weight Loss

Upset stomach

When you are experiencing stress, digestive trouble can be a problem. Your upset thoughts can make you feel sick to your stomach so that you don't feel like eating.


Stress can bring on feelings of sadness and hopelessness which suppress your appetite and lead to weight loss. If you are grieving, you may simply not feel like eating.


A preoccupation with your troubles and accompanying anxiety and depression can result in apathy. Stressed and depressed, you may adopt a "what's the use" attitude and quit eating, which results in weight loss.

Stress fatigue

Stress can exhaust you to the point that you are simply too tired to regularly feed yourself. Stress inhibits sleep, which compounds the fatigue problem. Stress fatigue may lead to skipped meals and weight loss..

Counteracting weight loss

Get at least 20 minutes a day of vigorous exercise to reduce stress, stimulate your appetite and impart a healthy fatigue, inducing more restful sleep. Participate in an activity you enjoy--yoga, weight training, jogging, or cardiovascular exercise--regularly to offset the tension and accompanying lack of appetite that precipitates weight loss due to stress.

Natural help for stress

Try herbs like chamomile, valerian, and kava kava and take B vitamins to support your nervous system and improve digestion so that you feel like eating again. Be sure to check with your doctor before taking herbal and vitamin supplements. If you are stressed, you may be losing weight and wondering why. Stress creates a physiological state of tension inhospitable to good digestion. When you are feeling upset, you may not feel like eating, or food may cause you to feel sick and unable to eat, resulting in weight loss.