Sleep to Lose Weight
Do you know how important quality sleep is for losing and then maintaining your ideal weight? Let’s focus on the importance of quality sleep, its effect on your dream body and ways to develop better sleep habits.
We all know how important eating and exercising are to maintain healthy body weight. But years of research have revealed a strong link between lack of sleep and being overweight. This is an important warning for all of us: if we want to be fit, we need to sleep more!
Numerous studies show that restricted sleep and poor sleep quality can lead to metabolic disorders, weight gain, and other chronic health conditions.
Adequate sleep is an important part of a healthy weight loss plan. Most importantly, researches show that not getting the right sleep during dieting can reduce the amount of weight loss and on the opposite - even encourage overeating.
A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that when people are sleep deprived, they tend to late-night snacking more and they do, they are more likely to choose high-carb snacks.
A second study confirmed that getting too little sleep increases people’s cravings for energy-dense, high-carbohydrate foods, but also found that the tired participants ate larger portions of all the foods which led to increased weight gain.
Another study of almost 70,000 women who were followed for 16 years found that those who slept five hours a night were 32 percent more likely to gain weight (about 15 kg more) than women who slept at least seven hours a night.
Unfortunately, these findings are not limited to adults only. Studies show that insomnia also increases the risk of obesity in children. Especially considering the fact that childhood obesity rates have tripled in the last 30 years, it is obvious how important the role of sleep in weight control is.
Putting all of these findings together, a sleepy brain appears to be craving junk food while also lacking the impulse control to say NO.
In light of this information, we can take immediate action to improve our sleep quality and we can relax our body by getting results in a short time.
The basics for a better night's sleep are pretty simple. Here are some ideas to establish a sleep routine that will help you shed those pounds:
Establishing a regular sleep schedule: Large fluctuations in your sleep schedule or going to bed late at night for a week and then suddenly trying to sleep properly can cause changes in metabolism and decrease insulin sensitivity, making it easier for blood sugar to rise. For this reason, it is very important to set up a routine to wake up and sleep at the same time every day, possibly even on weekends.
Sleeping in a dark room: Darkness cues our bodies to release the natural sleep hormone melatonin, while light suppresses it. Exposure to artificial light such as a TV or bedside lamp while sleeping is associated with an increased risk of weight gain and obesity. To avoid this situation, turn off your computer, mobile phone, and television at least an hour before you hit the sack and make sure your room is totally dark.
Not eating right before going to bed: Late eating is one of the important factors making weight loss difficult. Avoid eating heavy meals and drinking alcohol close to bedtime as this can cause heartburn and make it difficult to fall asleep. And I would suggest that you stay away from coke, tea, coffee, and chocolate after 3 pm or at least reduce the amount if you cannot stop. Caffeine can stay in your system for up to 6 hours.
Trying to Reduce Stress: Chronic stress leads to poor sleep and weight gain in a number of ways, including eating to cope with negative emotions. Establish a bedtime ritual. It is not the time to solve big problems. Instead, take a warm bath, meditate with relaxing music, or read a book.
My final Conclusion
Sleep is very important to me: I attach great importance to at least 7 hours of quality sleep for myself and my children. I guess I can use the term early bird for myself because I love to wake up early in the morning and that also helps me to go to bed earlier at night. Since caffeine definitely makes me lose my sleep, I always have it in the morning and never after 3 pm. Even a glass of coke or green tea in the early evening can keep me up all night and since it may have the same effect on you, I suggest you don’t drink anything caffeinated in the afternoon. I had a friend who took her vitamins in the evening and was surprised she was awake until the early morning hours. Don’t do that okay! Of course, I strongly believe and recommend daily exercise for that quality sleep because working hard may make you tired mentally but your body also needs to be challenged.
7 hours of sleep restores us physically, mentally, and emotionally. It facilitates learning, helps us to concentrate and retain information, and gives our brains a much-needed rest in the hustle and bustle of our hectic lives. Basically sleep is the habit you want to add to your routine to lose weight most effectively. By improving your sleep quality you increase your life quality and fitness. I suggest you read this previous post for more recommendations to improve your sleep quality.