Believe it or not, but a shocking 40% of Americans get only six hours of sleep or less per night, according to a recent Gallup poll…
A cranky attitude and groggy mornings aren't the only side effects of insufficient sleep, either - skimping on shut-eye can also lead to weight gain (yikes!). A Columbia University study in fact found that people who get less than seven hours of sleep per night are heavier, have a tougher time losing weight, and gain more weight over time.
If you're trying to drop a few kilos or shape up, getting enough sleep each night is just as important as hitting the gym. Here are four reasons to hit the snooze buttons in the morning and get more sleep!
Four reasons why sleep is important for weight loss
#1: It helps burn more calories
Not only do you feel fresh, energetic and ready to cease the day after a good night’s rest, but your body also burns calories – even when you’re not working out! An American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study found that normal sleepers' resting energy expenditure – the amount of calories burned when you’re not moving – was 5% higher than their tired counterparts. What’s more is they burned 20% more calories after eating a normal meal versus sleep
#2: It helps you make healthier food choices
A study published in Obesity
found that sleep-deprived men bought almost 1,300 calories in food more than well-rested mean – whoa! And this was independent of hunger, because all of the participants (sleep-deprived and not) ate a standardised meal at breakfast before the test. The lesson here? Never go grocery shopping when you’re hungry – or exhausted!
******** FEATURED ********
Here’s the plain truth. Diets alone don’t work.
How many diets have you been on, weight loss pills you’ve consumed, injections you’ve had to endure? You might have lost some weight but it’s probably all back on again…
The truth is that there is no magic solution to make the weight drop off.
The secret to successful weight loss isn’t starving yourself nor is it limiting your food choices or following a painful pattern of eating.
#3: It helps your body drop fat
You can eat exactly the same diet as your friend, but if you’re not getting sufficient sleep every night, you simply won’t lose as much fat
as them. A study conducted by the University of Chicago compared the weight loss
results from sleeping eight and a half hours per night versus only five and a half hours per night. Participants in both sleep groups ate the exact same number (around 1,450) of calories per day. The researchers found that while participants in both groups lost around 3 kg, more than half of that weight was fat for those in the well-rested group, compared to only a quarter for tired participants.
#4: It helps curb late-night snacking
This one’s a no-brainer – the longer you’re awake, the more likely you are to eat calories you don’t need. This can cause you to put on up to almost 1 kg a day, according to a University of Pennsylvania study. Researchers behind this study found that over the course of seven days, sleep-restricted subjects (sleeping from 4am to 8am) gained more weight than their well-rested counterparts (sleeping from 11pm to 8am). This is because sleep-deprived subjects ate 550 calories between 11pm and 4am; a time that the well-rested group spent in bed asleep.
Now go on and catch some z’s! Your waistline will thank you.
Note: 2.5 of 2 votes