October 17, 2007
Sleep: Taken For Ganted
Research dedicated to sleep and body weight has been finding some interesting data regarding hormone action. Ever notice when you haven't been sleeping well, you tend to eat more? Maybe you feel like you have low energy and need to eat food for energy...when really you just need a nap or to go to bed earlier.
In a recent study, when sleep was cut in half from 8 to 4 hours per night, subjects craved more high-calorie, high-carbohydrate foods like candy, cakes and cookies. Blood tests showed an inability to use insulin similar to that of someone with diabetes. Cortisol levels increased as well (Cortisol has been linked with abdominal fat storage).
Leptin - a hormone known to increase satiety - decreased in these patients while ghrelin - a hormone known to stimulate appetite - increased. Overall, results indicated a positive association with appetite and weight gain.
If you suffer from chronic sleep deprivation, try these tips:
-- Get out of bed at the same time each morning; that means strive to go to bed at the same time.
-- Make your bedroom cool and comfortable.
-- Don't stay in bed and try to sleep. If, in 10-15 minutes, you are struggling to fall asleep, get up, move to another room and do something distracting but not stimulating. Read or perhaps listen to soft music.
-- Use the bedroom for sleep. Don't pay bills, watch TV or eat.
-- Don't clock-watch.
-- Avoid alcohol near bedtime; avoid caffeine after noon.
-- Relax before bed. Just as you might read to children to help them get to sleep, you need a way to unwind.
Posted by Lisa at October 17, 2007 7:47 AM
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