What’s the connection between Sleep and Weight Loss?

Are you one of those people that say ‘I only get/need 4-5 hours of sleep a night’? Do you feel that is all you can afford to do because you have so much on your plate and are being pulled in a million different directions? Or maybe you just have difficulty falling or staying asleep. Let’s take a moment and truly evaluate your sleep patterns and what effect it has on the rest of our day and your body. First, be honest with yourself. Do you really only need 5 hours sleep? Or you just telling yourself that? Convincing yourself that it’s AMAZING what you can accomplish in a day with such little sleep. Getting such little sleep can cause an array of problems that spill over into you day(night). Start with answering a few questions:

  • Do you get tired, lack energy or feel drowsy during the day?
  • Borderline heart disease or type 2 diabetes?
  • Overweight? Fat storage around tummy and hips?
  • Do you find yourself anxious or depressed?
  • Have trouble falling/staying asleep?
  • Have difficulty focusing?
  • Do you suffer from sleep apnea/insomnia?
  • Too tired to exercise?
  • Intense food cravings? Especially in the evenings.

Any or all of these issues could have to do with your lack of sleep. You may not initially attribute it to being the case, but take control and attempt to slowly increase your sleep time and you’ll soon reap the benefits. No longer will you be crashing and being short with those around you. Instead, you’ll find yourself in a happier, better mood throughout the day.

So how and why are you not getting enough sleep? There could many reasons. Stress? Trying to accomplish too much? Lack of good nutrition? Lack of exercise? Too much stimuli/blue light before be (i.e, tv, computer, phone usage…)? Let’s make some little changes and get your sleep on track so that you are getting at lease 7-8 hours of solid sleep per night.

  • Get your nutrition/diet in check, throughout the day. Eat some dairy (protein) and carbs as your evening snack, which will allow the casein to help build/repair muscles. And avoid the nightcap (alcohol).
  • Take 5-10 minutes each morning and evening to plan out or reflect your day (meditate)
  • Decrease your blue light usage approx.. 2 hours before bed
  • Schedule yourself to get into bed 15 minutes earlier and increase the time each day/week.

I challenge you to track your sleep for the next 2 weeks. Take note of what time you went to bed, approximately what time you fell asleep, how many times you woke up in the middle of the night, were you able to quickly fall back asleep? And how many hours you did you actually sleep?  Take this information and utilize some of the tips above and incorporate them into your “new” routine to increase your sleep time to 7-8 hours of AMAZING sleep!

Stay Healthy

~Rosanne Allen
Ideal Collaborative Nutrition