How much is enough sleep?

It may come to a surprise to you but people who get adequate sleep that being 7 to 9 hours each night weigh less. There is a distinct link between sleep and your body weight.

Sleep supports weight loss.  The amount of sleep you are able to get significantly affects two hormones Ghrelin & Leptin which influence the appetite.

Ghrelin signals your brain and enhances appetite on when its time to eat. Leptin on the other hand cues your brain then you've had enough food.

A lack of sleep disturbs the hormonal balance. So when your sleep deprived, your body makes more ghrelin and has a drop in leptin which means your being singled that its time to eat more often and your leptin levels dropping your being cued to eat more food. 

Then there's cortisol. Lack of sleep causes and increase in cortisol levels which is the stress hormone frequently associated with fat gain. Cortisol also activates reward centers in your brain that make you want food and signals your body to conserve energy to fuel your waking hours.

And above all,  the loss of sleep causes imbalances with your hormones and thats a whole other topic we can go into at another time.


Tricks and Tips for a Better Night’s Sleep

In today’s world, snoozing can be difficult, particularly when all your screens (computers, TVs, cell phones, tablets) lure you into staying up just a little longer.

The basics are pretty simple:

  • Shut down your computer, cell phone, and TV at least an hour before you hit the sack.
  • Save your bedroom for sleep and sex. Think relaxation and release, rather than work or entertainment.
  • Create a bedtime ritual. It's not the time to tackle big issues. Instead, take a warm bath, meditate, or read.
  • Stick to a schedule, waking up and retiring at the same times every day, even on weekends.
  • Watch what and when you eat. Avoid eating heavy meals and alcohol close to bedtime, which may cause heartburn and make it hard to fall asleep. And steer clear of soda, tea, coffee, and chocolate after 2 p.m. Caffeine can stay in your system for 5 to 6 hours.
  • Turn out the lights. Darkness cues your body to release the natural sleep hormone melatonin, while light suppresses it.