This bad habit could weaken your weight loss journey

Hi FitFam!

Hope you all are doing well!

I have some really interesting information to share with you guys today. As you may have already read from the title, we are going to talk about the concept of how sleep and weight loss are connected.

Have you noticed that anytime you talk about the idea of losing weight, the two most likely responses are- ‘eat a healthy diet’ and ‘exercise regularly’. Now while these claims are true, we often tend to forget that sleep has a direct effect on our mind and body. The more well rested you are, the better your body functions.

Hence, the mantra of ‘eat less & move more’ might not always work for you. It is essential to give your body the rest it deserves in order to restore energy and work efficiently.

Are you interested to know how lack of sleep can affect weight loss?

Great! So let’s jump right into it.

Sleep and Body

Firstly, let us begin by understanding what happens to our body when we sleep. Our brain tends to process all the information we have gained throughout the day. Once this is done, it begins to release different hormones to carry out certain bodily functions like:

  • Melatonin from your pineal gland, to control your sleeping pattern.
  • Growth Hormone from the pituitary gland, to help your body repair itself and grow new cells.
  • Reduced levels of cortisol, which is also called the stress hormone.

What this means is that, your body basically goes in to repair mode while you are asleep. From 10pm to 2am is the peak time frame of when your body performs the maximum amount of repair work. Now, it is necessary for the body to carry out these tasks every single day to make sure that everything from your organs to hormones function smoothly.

When you get a good uninterrupted sleep from anywhere between 7 to 8 hours, your body feels fresh, energized and ready to take on the day actively. However, when you sleep late your body is only half repaired, resulting in the feeling or tiredness, inactivity and lethargy.

The popular concept of ‘beauty sleep’ came to be known since our body produces less cortisol (stress hormone) while we are asleep, which automatically has a huge positive influence on our appearance, mood and wellbeing.

Sleep and Weight Loss

Secondly, let us understand how lack of sleep could be affecting your weight loss journey. Now, there are many factors that contribute to our weight. It could be the diet we eat, the workout routine we follow or our metabolism. The way sleep can affect our weight is:

  • Lack of sleep can cause something called ‘metabolic laziness’. On the days that we have not had a good night’s sleep we often tend to feel lazy, dazed and exhausted. In the same manner, our fat cells feel the same too. This results in losing less fat from the body after working out, despite eating right and having a healthy routine.  
  • Sleep deprivation also observes a higher level of cortisol in the body, which can make you crave food more than usual.
  • It can also reduce the production of Growth Hormone, which acts as a natural source of anti-ageing and fat-burning properties. This gradually results in your body’s inability to promote recovery after exercising.

A good way to start initiating change in your weight loss journey is to regulate your sleep schedule. Instead of going to bed late, try to change your routine by sleeping and waking up early. This will help you shed that extra weight, while maintain a healthy diet and workout routine.

Good quality sleep promotes better functioning metabolism which can directly help with promoting weight loss a lot faster. Therefore, the next time you feel tired, inactive or stuck in your weight loss journey, you know where to make changes.

I hope this blog has helped you to get a better understanding of the relationship between sleep and weight loss.

If there are any questions that you would like to ask me, feel free to leave it in the comments section below and I will be sure to answer them.

Till then, take care and stay safe!

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