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Sleeping and Weight Loss

Losing sleep over not being able to lose weight?

Well, losing sleep might be the very reason why your weight loss progress is being sabotaged!

Just read on to find out more on how sleep affects your weight loss progress.rnrnStudies by researchers have shown that women who sleep for five hours or less every night usually weigh more than those who sleep for at least seven hours a night. There is substantial medical evidence to suggest that weight loss and sleep are connected. A 2010 study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in fact said that cutting down sleep reduces the benefits of weight loss programs and dieting.

In the study, dieters lost the same amount of weight when they got a full night’s sleep as they did when they slept less. However, when the dieters got sufficient sleep, the amount of fat lost accounted for more than half of the total weight lost. When the sleep hours were insufficient, the amount of fat lost accounted for only one-fourth of the total weight lost. Also, dieters felt hungrier when they cut back on their sleeping hours. Researches have also suggested that the number of hours you sleep (possibly even the quality of sleep) may affect hormonal activity which in turn is related to one’s appetite.

How Hormones Affect Sleep and Weight Loss: The hormones leptin and ghrelin play a major role in controlling when one feels hungry or full. Ghrelin (secreted in the gastrointestinal tract) is the hormone which triggers our appetite. It also reduces energy consumption by the body and promotes fat retention. Leptin (produced in the body’s fat cells) on the other hand, sends off signals to the brain when one is full. When you do not get sufficient amount of sleep, there is an increase in the levels of ghrelin in the body, with a simultaneous decrease in leptin levels. As a result you feel hungrier and you won’92t feel as satisfied even after you eat. The combined effect of these two sets the perfect stage for overeating, which in turn leads to weight gain. Getting adequate sleep will help to maintain the right hormonal balance thus halting any weight gain from loss of sleep.

So if you are on a diet plan or a weight loss program, make sure you get a good night’s sleep. Experts suggest that you should get at least seven hours of sleep.

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