The results of an analysis of 11 studies comparing sleep deprived people with those who were not, published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition last week, showed that the sleep deprived group ate significantly more fat, less protein, took in an average of 385 calories more a day, but were not more active.
Original article abstract: http://www.nature.com/ejcn/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ejcn2016201a.html
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Previous studies have shown that lack of sleep affects hormones that regulate our appetite. The less we sleep, the hungrier we are, the more we eat. This study offers insight into about how much more – 385 calories on average, which is about the amount in a ½ cup of shelled peanuts, or two caramel Grande lattes, or 1 ½ slices of pizza. Eat this much extra a day and in nine days you’ll gain a pound. Do this for a year, you’ll gain 40 pounds!
If you’ve gained weight and don’t know why – it maybe that you’re not sleeping enough. Try sleeping more - this may be the only time you’ll have ‘everything to lose and nothing to gain!’
In 2015, The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) revised its sleep time recommendations to the following:
Newborns (0-3 months) 14-17 hours each day
Infants (4-11 months) 12-15 hours
Toddlers (1-2 years) 11-14 hours
Preschoolers (3-5) 10-13 hours
School age children (6-13) 9-11 hours
Teenagers (14-17) 8-10 hours
Younger adults (18-25) 7-9 hours
Adults (26-64) 7-9 hours
Older adults (65+) 7-8 hours
The NSF suggests the following ways to develop better sleep hygiene (those things you do to prepare for sleep)
Create a Zen bedroom
Minimizing or eliminate noise, if possible. If not, then aim for consistent noise white noise) rather than intermittent noise, like that from a TV.
Keep the temperature cool, between 60-67.
Avoid bright light 30-60 minutes before bed.
Dim or turnoff bright overhead lights and lamps and switch off electronic devices (computers, cell phones, etc.)
Develop a bedtime routine
Read in bed, take a warm shower or bath before bed.
Go to bed at the same time every night
Avoid stimulants 4-6 hours before bedtime
Stay away from tea, coffee, chocolate, alcohol, and nicotine. All of them keep you awake.
Choose calming exercise in the evening, rather than intense exercise.
If you exercise in the evening, try yoga, Tai Chi, or Qigong. They help
relieve stress and bring about calm.
Go to bed 15 minutes earlier than you usually do.
If you sleep less than what is recommended, increase your sleep time gradually. Try
going to bed 15 minutes earlier. When you are used to that, add another 15 minutes until
you reach your sleep goal.
For more information:
Centers for Disease Control – Insufficient sleep is a public health problem
National Sleep Foundation
Sleep and obesity