Stress has been scientifically linked to an increase in visceral fat – the harmful belly fat.

One study concluded that those who are stressed are likely to have “excess abdominal fat, and have higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol”.

BUPA understands how the stress hormone cortisol could have a negative impact on sleeping patterns, because cortisol can keep you awake.

However, it also notes how a good night’s sleep can relax the systems in your body responsible for the stress response, thereby having the opposite effect.


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