The way you're sleeping could be the reason you can't lose weight

Publish Date
Tuesday, 1 August 2017, 11:56AM
Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

This could just be the most overlooked yet totally critical factor as to why you can't lose weight.

And it's your body's biggest and most important craving.

Sleep.

Sleep, sleep, sleeeep.

Studies have shown (based on a 6-year period) that those who sleep less than 6 hours per night gain up to twice the amount of weight as those who slept 7-8 hours per night.

So you can be eating clean, gyming and be in full "summer training" mode but the most common factor to hinder weight loss is the lack of quality sleep (of course unless it's an un-diagnosed medical condition)  

Some findings have found that people who sleep on average only 5 hours a night had a 73% increased likelihood of Obesity. SEVENTY-THREE PERCENT LIKELIHOOD OF OBESITY.

And we all know those crazy people who sleep only 4 hours per night, well, this is a very very bad thing to do! 

Studies show that these people have:

Decreased Leptin levels by 18%, (the hormone that tells your brain you’ve had enough to eat)
Increased Ghrelin levels by 28% (the hormone that tells your brain to go and eat)
Increased hunger by 24%
Increased carb cravings, especially sweets, salty, and starchy high calorie snacks

And this doesn't even include their diet or exercise habits. 

Russell Sanna, executive director of Harvard's Division of Sleep Medicine sums this all up with a very straight up message:

Without adequate sleep, "you get sick, fat, and stupid." she said.

So. Here are some tips to get a better nights sleep ASAP. 

  • Sleep in complete darkness or as close to it as possible. 
  • Do whatever you need to do to stop problem solving things whilst you are lying in bed trying to get to sleep. Reading can help get rid of those thoughts. 
  • Avoid bright lights (TV/phone)
  • Make sure your not too hot.
  • Don't consume caffeine after 1pm.
  • You should go to bed, and wake up, at the same times each day, even on the weekends. 
  • Avoid alcohol before bed.
  • Avoid using loud alarm clocks.

So if this hasn't convinced you to go to bed straight after Shortland Street tonight, we don't know what will! (Well that's if you have to wake up at 4am which is just crazy in the first place)

And let's be honest. Life is so much better with sleep.