Last Updated on May 1, 2017 by Michael Brockbank
Sleep can have a profound impact on your body in a variety of ways. From keeping your mind sharp to physical fitness, it’s imperative that you get the proper amount each night. Over time, sleep deprivation can cause everything from mild irritability to organ failure. For those of us who have children, it may be more difficult to get proper rest regardless of how old the children are.
Losing Weight While You Sleep
According to director John Jakicic of the Physical Activity and Weight Management Research Center in Pittsburgh, yes – it’s a real place, hormones that are affected by sleep deprivation can contribute to weight gain. However, this is a slow process that accumulates over time. If you stay up playing Call of Duty tonight, you’re not going to gain 20 pounds – unless you ate that much in junk food the night before.
How Sleep Affects the Body in Terms of Weight Control
When you’re physically exhausted, it’s more difficult to have the energy to commit to strenuous activity. Getting a full night’s rest contributes to the levels of energy you have in any given day. If you’re running on empty, you’re going to do less movement. Less movement will contribute to fewer calories burnt. See the pattern, there? Being physically tired can prevent you from performing a myriad of physical activity such as walking or exercise.
Other experts attest to the appetite hormones in the body, such as leptin and ghrelin, are developed while you’re sleeping. In layman’s terms, you don’t fill as full if you don’t get enough sleep. This translates to feeling hungry more often than you would if you actually got a decent amount of rest.
Using Materials to Build Onto the Body
When you’re sleeping, the body uses the materials you’ve eaten to do everything from building muscle mass to rejuvenating cellular tissue. Without going to bed on time, you’re body doesn’t use these materials as it would – which could contribute to turning that material into fat deposits. Unless you spend the night jogging or other physical activity, you won’t burn the same compounds you would if you slept. Laying down on the couch watching Netflix all night is not conducive to monitoring your weight – especially if you do so with a bag of chips.
If you actually went to bed at a regular time, there may be less midnight munching involved. I am guilt of this to a degree. The longer I stay awake, the more I feel like I need a snack. In the past, this translated into a meal – way more calories than I’d care to admit. If I were to go to bed at 10pm, I’d get a full eight hours before I had to be up with the girls to take them to school. This also means I would eat approximately 300 calories less per night or more.
Improving Sleep Patterns Will Affect Your Health
When it comes to sleep, there are many health benefits that you may not consider. Virtually anything that has to deal with cognitive abilities or physical stature will be affected by the way you sleep. This includes things like:
- Decisions concerning your career
- A better memory
- Improving your sex life
- Getting more time at the gym without exhaustion
- A heightened level of mood
- Improving your ability in a video game
Although sleep won’t deliver the same level of weight loss as routine exercise or eating better throughout the week, it can contribute to the facets of your life that do. Give your body what it needs to survive and enhance the way you view life. An average of five to six hours a night of rest is not enough to keep you mentally and physically balanced.