Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Insomnia and weight loss

Since I have been having trouble sleeping this week I thought I would find an artical on insomnia and the effects on weight loss and share.

Sleep is essential. It is the time when our body replenishes its vital energy by repairing the mental and physical wear-and-tear we suffer during the day. However, our "non-stop" culture has created a sleep-deprived generation. Cell phones, computers, PDAs and 24-hour cable television keep our brains stimulated. The result is Insomnia.
Insomnia and Weight Loss
Insomnia is difficulty in falling asleep or trouble in staying asleep. Some people with insomnia may fall asleep but they wake up easily or very early in the morning. And eventually, their health and day-to-day activities get affected due to poor sleep habits. Insomnia causes sleepiness in the day time, affects the ability to concentrate, memorize and perform daily tasks, causes headaches, stress and depression. But what is the connection between Insomnia and weight loss?
In order to understand the link between Insomnia and weight loss it is important to know how much quality sleep we need. Experts believe that adults require seven to eight hours of sleep every night. Studies suggest that sleep loss may increase hunger and affect the body's metabolism, which may make it more difficult to maintain or lose weight. Sleep loss appears to do two things to your weight:
  • It makes you feel hungry even if you are full. Sleep loss has been shown to affect the secretion of cortisol, a hormone that regulates appetite. As a result, individuals who lose sleep may continue to feel hungry despite adequate food intake.
  • It increases fat storage by interfering with the body's ability to metabolize carbohydrates, which leads to high levels of blood sugar. Excess blood sugar promotes the overproduction of insulin, which can lead to the storage of body fat and insulin resistance, a critical step into the development of diabetes.
Quite obviously, insomnia and weight gain is a double problem that needs to be resolved quickly before your health falls apart. If you are experiencing problems sleeping and think your sleeping disorders might be causing you to gain weight, here are a few DOs and DONTs


  • Drink lots of water as a habit.
  • Warm milk is supposed to be soothing. It helps sleep, constipation and gastric troubles in some. Herbal teas can also help.
  • Exercise regularly, but as a rule, not less than 3 to 4 hours prior to bedtime. Exercise is stimulating for many people.
  • Eating slow-burning carbohydrates can help you get a good night sleep
  • Establish relaxing pre-sleep rituals, such as a warm bath or a few minutes of reading.
  • Give yourself a relaxing massage once in a while.
  • Praying before going to sleep may help you to relax and de-stress.
  • Improve your sleep environment. Shut out extra light or noise. Improve ventilation.


  • Don't go to bed feeling hungry, but don't eat a big meal right before bedtime.
  • If you watch TV before bed time try to stop that habit.
  • Avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol in the late afternoon and evening.
  • If you have trouble sleeping at night, don't nap during the day.
  • Avoid snacking on foods that raise your blood sugar levels like white bread, candy and cookies.
Getting your sleep problems diagnosed and treated may be the first step in accomplishing your weight loss goals. If you've tried everything to lose weight and nothing seems to be working, don't give up. Lack of sleep may be keeping you from achieving weight loss success.

Read more: http://www.lifemojo.com/lifestyle/insomnia-and-weight-loss-1270562#ixzz1XDPdWsUN

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