Healthy Sleep Habits for Weight LossPosted: Mar 05 in Health And Wellness by Dr. Lazarus
Getting plenty of quality sleep every night can positively affect your weight loss efforts in Denver. While it may vary, most adults need at least eight hours of sleep every night in order to function optimally. If you’re going through a medical weight loss program, there are already plenty of changes you’ll be making to your lifestyle and things you’ll be dealing with.
How Sleep Affects Weight Loss
Sleep loss affects weight in a few different ways, including:
- Sleep affects the secretion of cortisol, one of the hormones that helps regulate appetite. If you aren’t getting enough sleep, you may feel hungry even though you’ve eaten plenty of food and would normally be full.
- Sleep affects your body’s ability to break down carbohydrates. This can lead to high blood sugar, promoting an overproduction of insulin and increased body fat storage. This may also increase insulin resistance, a major risk factor for diabetes.
How Weight Affects Sleep
Not only does the way you sleep affect your weight, but being overweight can bring with it sleep problems, creating a vicious cycle of poor sleep and minimized weight loss. These sleep problems include:
- Sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that causes breathing trouble during sleep. It may even cause you to stop breathing. It’s very disruptive to getting a good night’s rest. Being overweight increases your risk of developing this disorder.
- Muscle and joint pain. People who are overweight have an increased chance of having muscle and joint paints that can make getting comfortable and falling asleep very difficult.
Tips for Getting Better Sleep
- Try to be physically active every day, whether it be through practicing yoga or going for walks. But don’t exercise when it’s close to bed time, as that can make it difficult to fall asleep.
- Avoid alcohol, caffeine and nicotine in the evenings.
- Avoid napping during the day unless it’s a short powernap in the early afternoon.
- Create relaxing pre-sleep rituals, such as reading, listening to relaxing music or taking a warm bath.
- Create an environment conducive to healthy sleep. That is, keep your room dark and free of distractions when it’s time for bed.
Getting better, healthier sleep is one of the best things you can do to improve your overall health and wellness when you’re trying to lose weight. If you find that getting enough sleep is a nightly struggle for you, you may be suffering from a sleep disorder, such as obstructive sleep apnea and should consult your physician in order to receive a proper diagnosis and begin any necessary treatment.