Sleep less – weigh more, studies show. Get your zzzzz’s.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, the average woman gets only six and a half hours of sleep per night. Chronic sleep deprivation can have a variety of effects on the metabolism and overall health.
- Interferes with the body’s ability to metabolize carbohydrates and causes high blood levels of glucose, which leads to higher insulin levels and greater body-fat storage.
- Drives down leptin levels, which causes the body to crave carbohydrates.
- Reduces levels of growth hormone–a protein that helps regulate the body’s proportions of fat and muscle.
- Can lead to insulin resistance and contribute to increased risk of diabetes
- Can increase blood pressure
- Can increase the risk of heart disease
Research findings presented at the 2006 American Thoracic Society International Conference, showed that women who slept 5 hours per night were 32% more likely to experience major weight gain (an increase of 33 pounds or more) and 15% more likely to become obese over the course of the 16-year study, compared to those who slept 7 hours a night.
To your best health!
Cassandra Mick, CNE.