By Divya PurushoTham, Express News Service
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM : If you are trying to lose weight, then the amount of sleep you are getting is just as important as your diet and exercise. New studies have claimed that people who get less than six hours of sleep every night tend to gain more weight over time than people who get seven to eight hours of sleep. Here are a few reasons explaining why getting enough sleep may help you lose weight.Poor sleep could be a major risk factor for weight gain and obesity. It has been linked to higher body mass index and weight gain.
It also plays a role in increasing appetite. This is caused by the impact of two hunger hormones called ghrelin and leptin which control hunger and fullness. Ghrelin is a hormone released in the stomach that signals hunger in the brain, whereas leptin is released from fat cells. It suppresses hunger and signals fullness in the brain. When a person does not get adequate sleep, the body makes more ghrelin and less leptin leaving them hungry and increasing their appetite.
Sleep prevents cravings and helps make healthy choices. Lack of sleep alters the way our brain thinks. This usually makes it harder to make healthy choices and resist tempting foods. So, after a night of poor sleep not only is a bowl of ice-cream very rewarding but one will also have a harder time practising self control, hence resulting in increased intake of foods rich in calories, fats and carbohydrates.
Sleep can improve physical activity. Lack of sleep can cause daytime fatigue making a person less motivated to exercise. Getting more sleep may even improve performance.
Lack of good sleep can cause the cells to become insulin-resistant. So a few days of poor sleep can definitely cause insulin resistance that is a precursor for both weight gain and type 2 diabetes.
If you are finding it hard to sleep, have a bedtime snack that includes foods that encourage the production of the sleep like transmitter and serotonin.Foods that boost serotonin include bananas, dark chocolate, yogurt, walnut, oats, cottage cheese and milk.The less you sleep the more weight you gain, and the more weight you gain, the more harder it is to sleep. Establishing, healthy sleep habits can help your body maintain a healthy body weight.