LIFESTYLE BLOG

Sleep for Weight Loss & Optimal Health

Weight loss is not as simple as eating less—it requires a total lifestyle overhaul that starts with better, longer sleep. Most adults just don’t get enough sleep, and if you’re trying unsuccessfully to lose weight time and time again, the amount of sleep you’re NOT getting could play an important role. Studies have shown that sleep may be the missing factor for people who are struggling to lose weight. 

Sleep is one of the most significant but least understood aspects of our lives. It’s become commonplace for adults to get too little sleep, inconsistent sleep, or have irregular sleep patterns—and while we’ve all come to accept exhaustion, the health consequences can be devastating. 

Here, Dr. Mullins shares the importance of sleep for weight loss, wellness, and longevity—and the connection between them all. 

How Much Are We Talking?

To perform optimally, adults need 7-9 hours of sleep a night. To truly see the health benefits of good sleep, this should be the standard. 

What’s “Good Sleep”?

While the amount of sleep you get each night is important, other aspects of sleep also play a role in health and well-being. Good sleep means good quality, deep sleep. Sleep quality is compromised when you wake up several times during the night or experience symptoms of sleep disorders, like snoring or gasping for air.  If you’re not getting good sleep, you may wake up feeling unrested (even after 8-9 hours).

Sleep & Weight—The Connection 

Evidence suggests that the number of hours of sleep adults get each night has dramatically decreased over the last century, while simultaneously, the rates of obesity have increased. As a result, medical professionals now recognize the connection between weight and sleep. We now know that lack of sleep or poor-quality sleep can lead to metabolic disorders, weight gain, and a higher risk of obesity. 

Additionally, healthy sleep regulates hormones like cortisol and testosterone and contributes to a healthy metabolism. Not getting enough sleep, however, can cause an increased appetite and lower energy levels. And we all know someone (maybe even you) who is cranky and unpleasant when they don’t sleep enough. 

So, not sleeping can decrease your motivation to exercise because you’ll be tired and possibly not in the right frame of mind to want to work out. Also for so many, being tired makes it difficult to think about cooking, much less eating healthy, so fast food becomes that much more appealing. 

Beauty Sleep & Much More

There is most definitely a correlation between sleep and weight loss, but what else? 

Healthy sleep habits are proven to:

  1. Slow the effects of aging
  2. Increase lifespan
  3. Boost personal efficiency, success, and productivity
  4. Improve relationships
  5. Prevent chronic diseases like Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and certain cancers.

Not getting enough sleep can cause us to rely on caffeine or sleep aides, both of which can have detrimental effects on our health. And untreated Sleep Apnea can result in serious consequences such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, accidents, and diabetes. 

Dr. Mullins’ Final Minute

Sleep enriches our ability to learn, memorize, and make logical decisions. It recalibrates our emotions, refuels our immune system, fine-tunes our metabolism, and regulates our appetite. Getting a sufficient amount of good quality sleep is one of the most important things you can do for your overall health. 

Marshall Lifestyle Medicine offers treatments for insomnia, sleep apnea, and a physician-supervised approach to weight loss that involves an examination of sleep habits. 

To schedule a free consultation call (859) 554-8486 or send an email to info@marshalllifestylemedicine.com. You can also visit our website for more information, www.marshalllifestylemedicine.com.  We look forward to helping you begin the best journey of your life! 

father and son sleeping together

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