Avoiding sleep deprivation is necessary to have enough energy to exercise, and being deficient in sleep has also been shown to affect your metabolism. Shorter sleeping periods are associated with a decreased glucose tolerance, which leads to unregulated blood sugar levels. There is also evidence that this may put you at risk for type II diabetes.
Many people are already aware of the health risks that are associated with a lack of sleep, but did you know that it may also be the reason behind having an uncontrollable appetite? Research suggests that eating and sleeping are related to each other more than most people would expect.
Lack Of Sleep Causes Weight Gain
Studies have shown that animals who were subjected to food shortages tended to sleep less and that animals subjected to sleep deprivation tended to overeat, slowly increasing their food intake over a long period. Recent studies conducted on humans show that the hormones that regulate appetite are significantly affected by sleep duration.
Researchers found that sleep deprivation can cause people to eat more calories than their body requires, and also causes people to be more susceptible to overeating fatty products. This is because the amount of sleep you get directly regulates leptin, a hormone released by fat cells that send a signal to the brain telling it that you are full, which suppresses your appetite.
When you don’t get enough sleep, this hormone becomes unregulated, and it doesn’t send this signal to your brain, making it easier for you to binge-eat, especially on high-fat products.
According to the study, after the subjects were restricted to four hours of sleep for six days straight they had significantly low amounts of leptin in their blood. Researchers found that this caused an increase in appetite equivalent to that of subjects who had been restricting their calorie intake to 900 calories a day, even though the sleep deprivation subjects were eating a healthy amount of food.
They came to a conclusion that, in sleep-deprived subjects, “leptin levels were signaling a state of famine in the midst of plenty,” so much so that their appetite was equivalent to those that were restricting their calories to almost half of their regular intake.
How To Get A Good Night’s Sleep
Now that you know how a lack of sleep can cause you to eat more, here are some natural, drug-free methods that will help you get a better sleep:
Cherry juice, contains melatonin, a hormone naturally produced by our pineal gland that helps us sleep.
Tomatoes, olives, barley, rice, and walnuts are all food products that contain notable amounts of melatonin.
Turn down the heat in your room or wear fewer clothes to bed. Research suggests that cooler body temperatures are associated with better periods of sleep.
Most experts suggest getting between 6-8 hours of sleep every night; however, an average adult should aim to get at least between 7.5 and 8 hours of sleep.
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Source: Healthy Holistic Living
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