What’s the latest weight loss accessory? A bed! No joke more and more studies are showing that the number how well you sleep doesn’t just determine how much energy you have, but also where you gain weight and what happens when you try to lose it. It’s known that obese people sleep less than those of normal weight but now boffins are starting to realise that the amount of sleep people who aren’t obese get will determine how successfully they lose weight.
Research at the Chicago Sleep Research Lab found that while two groups of dieters lost the same amount of weight in two weeks, those lacking in sleep lost 1.7Ibs less body fat (60% more muscle) than those who’d slept well. In another study, they produced around 18% less of the appetite suppressing hormone leptin, and 30% of the appetite boosting hormone ghrelin than normal. Put simply those who didn’t get enough sleep ate more. In terms of calories (and I know how many of you are calorie conscious!)tired people eat an average of 220 more calories per day than their energy busting counterparts.
Tired people also are far more likely to grab sugary snacks than healthy ones for an instant boost. In doing so, they are more likely to gain weight, as sugary foods raise insulin, stopping them burning fat effectively. Furthermore, what you eat can also impact on your sleep and energy levels. Eating the right foods and avoiding the wrong ones can help it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep.
So here’s some tips to follow to get a good nights (or days when you do night shifts like me! 🙂 ) sleep!
Stick to a sleep schedule
Whenever possible go to bed and get up at the same time every day, even on weekends, holidays and days off.
Pay attention to what you eat and drink
Don’t go to bed either hungry or stuffed. Your discomfort might keep you up. Also limit how much you drink before bed.
Create a bedtime ritual
Do the same things each night to tell your body it’s time to wind down. This might include taking a warm bath or shower, reading a book, or listening to soothing music. (heavy metal can wait till the morning!)
Create a room that’s ideal for sleeping. Often, this means cool, dark and quiet. Get some earplugs if your partner’s snoring is a problem.
Include physical activity
I’m talking the gym type here 🙂 but to be fair ALL activity is good 🙂 Regular physical activity can promote better sleep, helping you to fall asleep faster and to enjoy deeper sleep.
When you have too much to do — and too much to think about — your sleep is likely to suffer. Jot down what’s on your mind and forget about it until the morning.
So, get rid of all your excuses as to why you can’t get to bed before midnight and you’ve got too much to do because if you don’t take care of your body now, you won’t have a body at all to work with. It’s harsh but as simple as that. Remember you have just the one body, so look after it!
Happy zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz 🙂