What’s the best way to lose weight?
How about sleeping it off?
Sounds like a wild fantasy, doesn’t it?
But there’s actually been a lot of buzz in the media lately about the strong connection between insomnia and weight loss.
Sleeping as the best way to lose weight? C’mon.
I don’t blame you for being skeptical. So was I.
But because challenges with weight loss and insomnia are two health issues that I have personally struggled with, I really wanted to know more.
It turns out that even if you do all the right things while you’re awake–like regular exercise and eating healthy foods–if you are sleep deprived, you may still be packing on the pounds or struggling to lose them in spite of your best efforts.
The research has me convinced. At least two dozen different studies have documented that people tend to weigh less if they sleep more.
One study showed that women who slept five hours per night were a whopping 32% more likely to experience weight gain (an increase of 33 pounds or more!), and they were 15% more likely to become obese over the course of the 16-year study, compared to those who sleep 7 hours a night. Wow!
It’s hormones, honey.
Two in particular:
Ghrelin – responsible for feelings of hunger, and Leptin – responsible for telling the brain when it’s time to stop eating.
When you are sleep deprived, your ghrelin levels increase at the same time your leptin levels decrease. The result is a big craving for high carb food and no “stop – you’re full” meter to reign in your appetite – definitely not the best way to lose weight!
And that’s not all – you also need an active growth hormone to break down fat for fuel. Since this hormone needs deep sleep to do its job, If you are a card-carrying insomniac, your body tends to pack on the extra fat instead.
How much sleep is enough? You need about 7 and a half hours of sleep per night for weight loss.
So take care of yourself.
• Make it a priority to get the sleep you need
• Stay out of the fast food drive-up lane and eat fresh, whole foods instead
• Move your body on a regular basis (try for 30 minutes at least three times per week)
Soon you may find yourself waking up to a thinner you.
I know I’m getting to bed on time tonight!