World Sleep Day
This World Sleep Day we’re talking about how regular, good quality sleep can contribute to our future health. Have you ever wondered about the connection between sleep and body weight? Read on as we find out why our sleeping patterns may be impacting weight loss.
Why is regular sleep important this World Sleep Day?
Having a bad night’s sleep now and then isn’t too bad for our health. But having frequent restless nights can impact our health in serious ways, including:
- Increased risk of developing medical conditions, like type 2 diabetes and heart disease
- Mental health conditions, like anxiety and depression
- Weight gain
How can sleep affect our weight?
When we think about looking after our diet, sleep isn’t usually the first thing we think about. Well, what if we told you recent research guesses that we eat an extra 400 calories per day when we’re sleep deprived . That’s equal to one extra meal per day!
This makes a lot of sense- think about it, we use food as fuel because Calories = Energy. So, when we’re tired, to compensate for the lack of energy, we reach for calorie dense foods to give us that all important boost .
Sadly, a bad night’s sleep can make managing our weight a whole lot harder! That’s because a lack of sleep lowers our body’s levels of leptin (the hormone that makes you feel full) and increase levels of ghrelin (the hormone that makes us feel hungry), together this leads to overeating and even weight gain .
How can we have a better night’s sleep for World Sleep Day?
Our bodies have an internal clock- it’s the thing that tells us when to wake up in the morning and when to unwind in the evening. The less we prioritize sleep and the more inconsistent our sleep schedule, the more likely we are to upset our body’s internal body clock, leading to confused brain and a bad sleep!
Much like our dietary routine (breakfast, lunch and dinner), having the same sleep pattern every day – even at weekends – helps our body find its natural rhythm, allowing us a more restful sleep.
We’re offering you some top tips just in time for World Sleep Day to help you improve your sleep and restore your body’s sleep-wake cycle:
Lights off, wind down
Melatonin is a light sensitive hormone. In dark atmospheres and during the night, more melatonin is produced, making us feel tired and ready for sleep. Bright lights in the evening inhibit the production of melatonin, which makes us feel more awake and is more likely to delay our ability to drift off to sleep.
Have a set bedtime
Whether it’s a weeknight or weekend, keep your bedtime consistent. Find a sleep time that suits you and stick to it. You might not feel tired at first, but once your internal body clock falls back into its natural rhythm, catching the Zzzzs will be a breeze!
Have a set wake-up time
In the event of an awful sleep the night before, you might wan to stay in bed the following morning. Doing this puts us at greater risk of throwing off our sleep routine. Resist the urge to sleep in and set your alarm to the same time every morning- even on the weekend! That way, you’re more likely to feel tired and ready for bed when you’re supposed to.
Have a light evening meal
Instead of filling up on a heavy, spicy, sweet or salty meal, try to opt for something light and easy on digestion. It’s best not to eat too close to bedtime, but a light snack or meal could be a good way to curb your appetite before a restful night’s sleep.
One of our total favorite pre-bedtime meals has got to be our Cereal Shakes! How often do you find yourself reaching for a comforting bowl of cereal as a midnight snack? High in protein and complete with a unique blend of Slendesta and Digezyme for 3+ hours of hunger control, swap your usual midnights snack for one of our yummy 100 calorie shakes!