Sleep and Weight Loss – What is the Relationship?
Is there a relationship between sleep and weight loss? Yes, a very important one.
Your body needs 7 to 9 hours of good, uninterrupted sleep each night. Researchers and sleep experts all agree that sleep is a powerful regulator of our hormones. As a result, your sleep has a significant part in your wellness and efforts to stay healthy or even lose weight.
How Sleep Affects Hormones
Sleep specifically impacts two of our hormones that are involved with our eating behaviors: Ghrelin and Leptin. You have probably heard of these hormones if you have ever asked yourself the question, “Why am I not losing weight?”
- Leptin tells our brain and body when we are full.
- Gherlin tells our brain and body when we are hungry.
When your body does not get enough sleep, then your Gherlin hormones will increase. As a result, you will feel hungry more often.
Simultaneously, when you are sleep deprived, your leptin levels decrease. This leaves your body and mind feeling like you are not full, even after eating enough food. It often leads to snacking and craving certain foods. (For example, comfort foods, junk foods, and of course… sugar.)
As you can see, not getting enough sleep can lead to a damaging cocktail of hormones released into your body that can derail the best, healthy eating plans.
In addition to regulating eating hormones, this sleep rhythm is important to so many different processes in your body and brain. Sleep allows us to heal and reprogram for the next day, so we are our most productive and happy selves.
Make Sleep a Priority for Weight Loss and Health
Make sleep a priority. In order to keep your hormones balanced and your cravings low, we need to make sleep a priority. Try your best to go to sleep at the same time each night, and to wake up the same time each morning. Also, avoid things that can disrupt your sleep. For example, avoid the blue lights emitted by TV, laptops, phones, tablets, etc. right before bed. Additionally, avoid eating a few hours before bed to help you fall asleep faster.