Sleep is essential to weight loss for two big reasons. First, there’s your metabolism: not getting enough sleep profusely changes the metabolic breakdown that happens once it’s consumed. Second, you have to consider the behavioral aspect because how much sleep you get influences what you put in your mouth. Let’s discuss further why sleep is essential to weight loss.
Sleep and Metabolism
Unless you have the willpower of steel and you’re one of the few who can walk past a vending machine after a week of late nights and not give Twix a double-take, then you’re like most of us. The general population of people in the modern world simply don’t get enough hours of sleep and because of this, suffer through food. Additionally, if you’re not good at estimating your food intake, or completely on top of your schedule, regardless of what’s causing the sleep deprivation in the first place, chances are, you’re gaining weight because of it. Your body knows you haven’t slept and it tells you this through several metabolic ways.
Reduces insulin sensitivity
Insulin sensitivity is the metabolic ability to be able to eat carbs – to utilize them for energy, instead of being stored as fat. A decrease in insulin indicates you’re more inclined to store food as fat (and as a result, you’ll still be hungry afterward).
Changes gut flora
Nobody is completely sure yet what the precise partnership is between your gut flora and obesity, but they do understand that there absolutely is one.
In recent inflammation studies, either sleeping 5 hours a night or sleeping at the wrong time (which is considered the shift work pattern) ended up increasing signs of inflammation. This study makes it even clearer: basically, anything that promotes diabetes does not help you lose weight.
Sleep and Behavior
Multiple studies have shown that if people are allowed to choose their own diet, sleep-deprived individuals eat more food, and especially more junk food. Because you have the ability to choose your own diet – you too will likely go for comfort foods when faced with sleep deprivation. Sleep deprivation is a massive instigator for sugar cravings and is one of the reasons for overeating high-carb junk foods like cookies, chips, pasta bowls and bread. This commonality is fairly easy to comprehend; when you aren’t getting enough energy from one source, your body will try to find it from somewhere else. The easiest ‘pick me up’ that is available to most of us is sugar which is found in most junk food, so sleep deprivation sends us straight to the candy aisle.
Effective weight loss means establishing a successful sleep schedule which makes you feel energized and ready to take on your entire afternoon and evening. Sleep deprivation can throw off a body’s response and behavior patterns to food, endangering your efforts to lose weight in unique ways. The solution to why sleep is essential to weight loss depends upon the cause, but you owe it to yourself to discover what the best result will be for you and how to treat it.