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How Does Sleep Affect Weight Loss?

It is worth noting immediately that, despite all the benefits of sleep, it is not a universal panacea for excess weight.

Thanks to sleep, you not only can relax but also lose weight.

Who does not dream of sleeping and losing weight at the same time? However, this method is not a dream at all, but a reality! Scientists have proven that the human body really burns fat at night.

Weight loss process

It is worth noting immediately that, despite all the benefits of sleep, it is not a universal panacea for excess weight, if, in addition to this method, no more efforts are made in order to deal with extra pounds. Also, those who prefer to have a high-calorie dinner accompanied by overeating should forget about achieving slimness while in the Kingdom of Morpheus. In this case, the body will not only not rest during the night, but also will not be able to burn the received amount of lipids, and on the contrary, will put them in reserve.

Despite the fact that we sleep at night, there is a continuous work going on. For an accurate understanding of these processes, read more here. Cells begin cleansing and renewal, lymph accelerates its processes, removing accumulated toxins. All these actions consume energy the source of which is lipids – fat deposits. If the load on the digestive system is not increased, and if sleep lasts for at least 6 hours (ideally 8 hours), then this will lead not only to weight loss but also to recovery with the help of the body’s own internal efforts.

And yet, weight loss is a complex process. Therefore, you should not rely only on sleeping. Together with proper nutrition, regular sports training and monitoring the level of stress and overwork, you will be able to notice pleasant changes after a while in the form of gaining a slim shape and improving your well-being.

Protein Helper

Despite the fact that many nutritionists recommend to strictly prohibit food consumption after 6 pm, opponents of this theory are about to dispel this myth. Scientists from the University of Florida conducted a study that not only did not confirm such a theory but, on the contrary, showed that refusal of food before bedtime can be dangerous for the body shape!

The experiment was quite simple but effective. A group of people was offered to drink a protein cocktail based on proteins before bedtime, and the total calorie content of a cocktail was up to 150 kcal. Such a drink helped speed up the metabolism in the body, as well as normalize blood pressure.

And those people who combined the process of losing weight with intense physical activity in the gym gained muscle mass by getting rid of accumulated lipids. These participants of the experiment turned out to feel better: they felt a surge of energy and vigour, even if a couple hours ago they were doing intense workouts.

The explanation for such scientific data is as follows: the human body is much more efficient in digesting and absorbing certain types of protein at night, during sleep. Thus, you should not completely refuse food in the evenings. The main thing is to choose healthy snacks that will contain at least 20 grams of protein.

The subtleties of coziness

The most important rule of a sound and healthy sleep is that there should be no gadgets at hand in the bedroom. The smartphone or tablet screen glow at night reduces the production of melatonin in the body, the hormone which is involved in many important internal processes. As a result, there is a violation of the biological rhythm, and the risk of developing various diseases increases because of the low hormonal indicators.

Through a series of studies, British scientists have proved that even a slightly dim light negatively affects a sleeping person and can cause overweight problems. Therefore, nightlights and other decorative elements for creating a special atmosphere in the twilight must be turned off in order for you to have a good rest. Even the light from the alarm clock should not fall onto the bed area.

The best option is to purchase blackout curtains for the bedroom. Since during the full moon, the room can be as lit as if a small lamp is turned on. It is also important to monitor the room temperature at night. Experts recommend falling asleep in a chilled room (around 64-68 degrees F), which will speed up the process of burning lipids in your sleep.

Compliance with the regime

Scientists from Yorkshire University have identified the following pattern: women who wake up at the same time (ideally even on weekends) are much less likely to suffer from the excess weight problem. An incorrect daily routine and lack of sleep leads not only to overwork and lack of energy, but can also lead to the development of heart disease and even cancer.

Just one hour of “lack of sleep” causes a jump in appetite due to changes in the endocrine profile. Hence the food breakdowns, an acute desire to eat sweets and overeating in the evenings. In the body, all processes are linked. Therefore, one violation will entail another and so on.

Another psychological motivation is set to maintain not only a healthy sleep but also the regime of the next day. It is best to pack a sports bag for tomorrow’s workout in the evening and put it in the most prominent place, for example, near the front door. This will help to motivate yourself in the morning not to miss a gym session, taking an important step in achieving the desired goal – to have health and harmony.

Dr. Detlef Pape Method

Based on the proven pattern that shows that all processes in the body are very much related to each other, an American scientist and doctor Detlef Pape created a special program for getting rid of excess weight in your sleep. In the essence of the method, he put the principles of separate nutrition which control the insulin indicator in the blood. This hormone is responsible for the metabolism and breakdown of accumulated lipids. Pape allocates 4-time phases during the day:

∙ phase 1 (from 6:00 am to 8:30 am)

In the morning, it is recommended that you allocate at least 15 minutes (preferably half an hour) to do simple exercises at home or go jogging in the park. After that, you should have a square breakfast with complex carbohydrates, for example, porridge or cereal with milk and a spoon of honey, fruit salad with natural yogurt. Animal protein and fatty foods must be excluded.

∙ phase 2 (from 10:30 am to 2:30 pm) During this phase, the body decreases in its ability to be active, so any physical activity is contraindicated. However, do not forget about a full meal, which should consist of an equal amount of protein and carbohydrates. The best option is boiled meat, steamed low-fat fish, as well as vegetables as a side dish. Dessert is also allowed.

∙ phase 3 (from 4:30 pm to 8:30 pm)

Perfect time to go to the gym. Exercise will be the most effective now and will help not only to get rid of body fat but also to build muscle, if necessary. As for nutrition, it is important to ensure that dinner comes no later than 8 pm and consists mainly of protein foods. Meat, eggs, cottage cheese, and hard cheese are allowed.

∙ phase 4 (from 10:30 pm to 6:00 am)

This is the time for sleep. In order for the body to begin to actively break down fats and to build muscle mass, you must sleep at least 7 hours. Otherwise, hormonal changes will occur, and the enzyme ghrelin, which is responsible for the feeling of hunger, will begin to grow, slowing down the process of losing weight.

Nutrition recommendations

1. There should be at least 4 hours between the main meals. Any snacks at this time are excluded, otherwise, the method will lose its effectiveness.

2. Fruits, yogurts and other dairy products are recommended to be consumed only in the morning, and best of all – for breakfast. And no kefir/buttermilk at night, as some nutritionists advise. In this particular case, any kind of snacking after dinner is prohibited.

3. You must drink at least 50 ounces of clear still mineral water, and apart from that, you can also drink tea (best without sugar) and herbal infusions in any quantity.

4. Products containing caffeine should be consumed no later than 3-4 hours before bedtime. These include not only coffee but also chocolate, sweet soda, as well as various kinds of sweets and desserts with caffeine in it.

5. Alcohol is highly recommended to be excluded from the diet. In exceptional cases, its intake in small quantities should be not less than 4 hours before bedtime. And those who have such a bad habit as smoking should try their best and smoke their last cigarette no later than 2 hours before departure to the Kingdom of Morpheus.

Rational dietary restriction in combination with regular physical activity and the right regimen are the three components that will help activate the process of losing weight while you sleep. The effect of each is individual, but according to average statistics, observing these rules, it is possible to lose up to 15-22 pounds in half a year with no harm to your health.

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Tired woman sleeping on the table in the kitchen at breakfast. Trying to drink morning coffee

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