Sleep is different for everyone. Coming up short on sleep can cause us to gain weight. When we don’t sleep, we tend to snack more, skip exercise because we are too tired, or even get fast food because we don’t have the energy to make our own meals. All of this can be a recipe for weight gain. There was a study done at the University of Chicago, sleep-deprived participants chose snacks with twice as much fat as those who slept at least 8 hours.
Sleep Controls Your Diet
There is a debate about the best way to achieve a healthy weight and it always revolves around eating and movement. If you want to look better, the most common suggestion is “eat less and move more.” But it’s not that simple, or even accurate. Sometimes you want to eat less and move more, but it seems impossible to do so. And there might be a good reason: Between living your life, working, and exercising are you forgetting to sleep enough? Or maybe, more importantly, you don’t realize that sleep is the key to being rewarded for your diet and fitness efforts. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 35 percent of people are sleep deprived. Considering that the statistic for obesity is nearly identical, it’s easy to connect the dots and discover that the connection is not a coincidence.
Not sleeping enough—less than seven hours of sleep per night—can reduce and undo the benefits of dieting, according to research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. During the study, dieters were put on different sleep schedules. When their bodies received adequate rest, half of the weight they lost was from fat. However when they cut back on sleep, the amount of fat lost was cut in half—even though they were on the same diet. What’s more was, they felt significantly hungrier, were less satisfied after meals, and lacked energy to exercise. Overall, those on a sleep-deprived diet experienced a 55 percent reduction in fat loss compared to their well-rested counterparts.
Poor Sleep Changes Your Fat Cells
Here’s why that’s bad: When your insulin is functioning well, fat cells remove fatty acids and lipids from your blood stream and prevent storage. When you become more insulin resistant, fats (lipids) circulate in your blood and pump out more insulin. Eventually this excess insulin ends up storing fat in all the wrong places, such as tissues like your liver. And this is exactly how you can become fat and suffer from diseases like diabetes.
Don’t Let Lack Of Sleep Ruin Gym Time
With lack of sleep, it can slow down the production of growth hormone and decrease protein synthesis. This means its going to be harder to build muscle. We need that muscle to burn fat and keep us looking young and healthy.
Some Natural Sleep Remedies
- Put away the technology- Break the habit of going to bed with your cell phone. Studies have show that the blue light from the electronic devices can delay the onset of sleep.
- Try Bed Time Yoga- Yoga relaxes the mind. Try focusing on your breathing and releasing the tension of your day.
- Get out of bed- If you can’t fall asleep within 20 minutes, leave your bed and do something non-stimulating in another room. Read a real book, not a E-Book(electronic) and avoid anything that may cause stress or aggravation that will prevent sleep.
- Build a sleep sanctuary- Keep you bedroom dark, cool and use some soothing scents to help calm the body and mind.
- Nap- Find some time in your day to if possible to take a quick 30 minute nap to help with your sleep debt.
- Tea- Try to find a bed time tea to drink. Sometimes warm soothing drinks before bed help relax the body and mind.
* I hope some of this will help the next person who is looking to get some rest and enhance their fitness journey.