How Does Lack of Sleep Impact on Weight Control?

Sleep deprivation has a pronounced negative affect on weight control for a number of reasons. Studies have shown that sleep-deprived people tend to snack much more often than people getting the “usual” 7-9 hours of sleep. Additionally, those snacks tend to be the high caloric/high carb/high fat variety.

Here is 6 ways sleep can help you lose weight

1. Poor Sleep Is a Major Risk Factor for Weight Gain and Obesity
2. Poor Sleep Can Increase Your Appetite
3. Sleep Helps You Fight Cravings and Make Healthy Choices
4. Poor Sleep Can Increase Your Calorie Intake
5. Poor Sleep May Decrease Your Resting Metabolism
6. Sleep Can Enhance Physical Activity

Chemically, there is a higher release of the hormone, cortisol, and this leads to fat deposition. Studies have shown that lack of sleep decreases metabolism as well. People that experience poor sleep usually feel tired during the day and getting “gym time” will be negatively impacted.

One of the current issues negatively impacting on sleep is our use of technology. How many of you, while in bed getting ready to go to sleep, check that smart phone to see if you have any e-mails, look at the up to date news or surf Safari for something else? My hand is being raised as I am as guilty of this behavior as much as anyone. I even will check sports scores in the middle of the night if I awaken to see what was transpiring in the west coast games.

The “chicken or the egg” concept applies here as well, because being overweight/obese negatively impacts on sleep. From sleep apnea to joint pains, poor weight control has deleterious effects on the sleep cycle.

During your long-term weight control journey try to set yourself up for better sleep. Turn off those smart phones at least an hour before bedding down for the night. Consider enacting some relaxing ritualistic behaviors before bed such as a warm bath, soft music, reading or some other behavior pattern to place your mind at rest.

Good sleep improves weight control. Weight control improves sleep. Try to get into this “good” cycle as opposed to the “viscous” one.

The bottom line: Along with eating right and exercising, getting quality sleep is an important part of weight maintenance.

Dr. Robert Posner One of the world’s leading medical weight loss researchers, Robert Posner, MD, operates his state-of-the-art weight loss clinic, Serotonin Plus, in the heart of Burke, Virginia, in the suburban Washington area.

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