How Sleeping More Can Help You Lose Weight

Are you eating right and exercising and still not losing as much weight as you’d like? There might an important factor missing in your equation: sleep.

  • Woman is SleepingAccording to a study published in the “American Journal of Epidemiology,” lack of sleep has a significant effect on the metabolism, leading to increased hunger, major cravings, and a predisposition to gain weight.

  • During the study, women who slept five or fewer hours per day gained double the amount of weight than women who slept at least six hours every night.

  • Sleeping the recommended 7-8 hours per day leads to even smaller or no weight gain.

  • The major problem with lack of sleep is that when you’re sleep-deprived, the levels of ghrelin in your body go up. Ghrelin is the hormone that controls hunger –the higher the amount circulating in your body at any given time, the hungrier you’ll be and the more frequently you’ll want to eat.

  • It’s also true that when you’re tired, your body will look for ways to obtain quick bursts of energy. Unfortunately, the best foods for quick energy are those loaded with sugars. Refined carbs, sweets, and sugary drinks will all wake you up and get you going within minutes of ingesting them.

  • Because they go through your body quickly, though, you will crash an hour or so after –and your body will ask you for more of the same to keep going. This vicious cycle is not only exhausting for the body, but it will also lead to weight gain because of the increased calorie consumption and the huge amounts of sugar you’ll be taking in.

  • And experts say it’s not only the number of hours you sleep that matters –the quality of your sleep is also key. If you keep waking up through the night or you toss and turn non-stop, you’re probably not getting enough rest, even if you’re in bed for eight hours.

To improve sleep quality, make sure the room is dark and quiet. Invest on some black curtains and a noise machine if nothing else will block the outside noise. Your waistline will thank you.