Sleep and Weight Loss

Proper nutrition and exercise are what most people associate with weight loss. This combination certainly does pack a powerful punch! Without proper nutrients and daily movement, any long-term weight-loss program probably will not have much staying power. However, many people do not realize the power that sleep has on weight loss and, in turn, weight gain. Sleep is one of the most important things you can do to increase the likelihood of losing extra weight and keeping it off for good. While your body is at rest, the work of restoration and replenishing is occurring within all the systems of your body. Memory consolidation occurs, hormone synthesis happens, muscles grow and repair, all while you are at rest. This is why it is recommended that the average adult gets 7-9 hours of sleep each and every night.

So, why does sleep play such a powerful role in weight loss and gain?

A study by the National Institutes of Health published findings and various surveys on the possible link between obesity and poor sleep habits. According to researchers, sleep loss is associated with an increased risk of becoming obese. Interestingly, findings correlate the trend towards a higher obesity rate and the prevalence in lower sleep duration in adults over the past several years. It appears as though the lack of sleep has indeed led to a generation of adults who are experiencing obesity in record numbers. According to research on the Sleep Foundation website, going without proper sleep for only a few days can create impairments with metabolism and profoundly affect hormone levels. The same was found to be true with the research from the NIH.

When your body does not get the rest it needs, something seems to happen with your hormone levels. Sleep plays a significant role in regulating the metabolism of glucose. In fact, healthy adults with an average BMI who slept less than 6 ½ hours had to make 30% more insulin to regulate their blood sugar levels. This evidence suggests that a healthy amount of sleep is needed in order for your body to process glucose effectively and thus regulate weight gain.

Here is another interesting fact: decreases in sleep can lead to increases in appetite. When you don’t get enough sleep, your body experiences a decrease in leptin, a hormone that tells your brain you are satiated. This decrease in leptin after sleep loss signals to your body that you need to consume more calories, even if you actually do not need to. Unnecessary calorie consumption leads to weight gain and, over time, can result in obesity.

There is a complex relationship between weight and sleep, and while the topic is too vast for the scope of this post, it is important to recognize the significance of sleep for health and well-being. Advanced Surgical and Weight Loss Institute in Merritt Island, FL knows that the fight to lose weight can be challenging. We want you to have every tool available in order to succeed. Sleep is just one of the variables when it comes to weight loss. If you need help on your journey to health, please contact us today. Rapid weight loss is attainable, and you do not have to walk this road alone.