If you're balancing your career, family, social life, and that never-ending to-do list, stress is inevitable. But too much stress can lead to a bigger gut. When you're stressed, your body releases the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol is necessary to regulate important bodily functions like blood pressure and fluid balance. But if you have too much of it, studies have shown your body ends up storing it in your midsection. Although stress is something that's difficult to tackle head-on, make sure you evaluate the major stressors in your life and seek therapy if necessary.