Long-term stress causes weight gain

New Delhi: Stress not only affects your mental health, but it can make you fat too, says a new study.

Researchers at University of Cincinnati have carried out the study and found long-term stress could lead to weight gain as the body`s metabolism slows down, making it harder for the body to burn calories.

The study has suggested that stress could lead to changes in the body that also lead to heart disease and other illnesses, the Daily Express reported.

In fact, the researchers have based their findings on an analysis of four rats.

The animals were put into a cage together, causing them to fall into a colony, with one dominant rat and three subordinates. While vying for position all of the rats ate less but when one became dominant he began to eat normally, while the others still ate less.

Once separated they all returned to eating normally, with the subordinates gaining weight, revealed the findings published in the American Journal of Physiology .