Sleep Deprivation and Weight Gain

Sleep Deprivation and Weight Gain_Strength 24In our modern, fast-paced world, it’s very easy to lose a few hours of sleep every night. We often sacrifice our sleep without even giving it a second thought. Unfortunately, sleep deprivation has many negative, long-term effects on our bodies. Though there is a direct correlation between sleep deprivation and weight gain, there are also numerous other effects. The loss of sleep can both damage our body and negatively impact our lifestyle.

The Impact of Sleep Deprivation

We may lose sleep for any number of reasons. Oftentimes, sleep deprivation comes from stress – too many tough days in the office, dragging the kids through the supermarket, or staying up late to finish some work can all add to our bodies’ levels of stress. This frustrating stress can make a restful sleep much more difficult to attain.

In a sort of compounded attack on our bodies, sleep deprivation adds yet more stress. The overall effect is a cyclical process of growing stress that our bodies cannot maintain.

Sleep Deprivation and Weight Gain

In nature, stress signals various dangers to our lives. And, in stressful situations, the bodies of most mammals begin to retain higher levels of fat cells. This extra fat is useful to combat periods of famine and difficulty in the wild. Unfortunately, excess fat is one of the last things we need in civilization, where food is certainly more than bountiful.

One of the most immediate effects of sleep deprivation is the complete loss of energy and enthusiasm. Lethargy can quickly set in after a few nights’ loss of sleep and leave us feeling disinterested in or even incapable of exercise – especially if we are not yet used to a new fitness routine.

Sleep Deprivation and Weight GainBeing tired as the result of sleep deprivation has yet another effect on our diets: the munchies. As we grow tired over the course of several days, weeks, or even months, our bodies seek food that is more instantly gratifying to our energy needs. Because we have not gotten enough energy from rest, our bodies encourage the consumption of less-than-healthy foods that are packed with easy-to-use energy, such as high-fat, high-sugar treats.

We’ve all experienced a sugar rush. After feeling low on energy, a quick fix such as potato chips or chocolate can make us feel incredible – even euphoric. Unfortunately, this quick fix comes at a cost – we soon feel worse than we did before. The cyclical nature of junk food consumption is both detrimental and difficult to stop.

As we put on more weight from these unhealthy habits, we start to notice the changes, and it makes us feel less than positive about ourselves. This can lead to poor moods and even depression, which further stimulate the desire for those quick and easy foods that gave us the extra weight in the first place. It’s easy to see the link between sleep deprivation and weight gain!

In order to break this long chain of vicious cycles between sleep deprivation and weight gain, a good night’s rest is a great place to start. You’ll feel more awake and energized – naturally. You’ll be more able to say no to those high-fat and high-sugar foods and you’ll even regain an interest in physical activities. Even a light jog on the treadmill for half an hour can make a huge difference in both your health and your mood – and you’ll love what it does for your body.

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About Valerie Springfield

Marketing is my profession. Health and wellness is my passion.