When we are sleep deprived our metabolism starts to slow down. 7-8 hours of good quality sleep is recommended. If you are someone who only gets 5 hours sleep and then starts to get 7 you will start to notice your weight drop. Why? This is all do with our nightly hormones Ghrelin and Leptin

Ghrelin is the ‘go’ hormone that tells you when to eat, and when you are sleep-deprived, you have more ghrelin.

Leptin is the hormone that tells you to stop eating, and when you are sleep deprived, you have less leptin.

The hormone ghrelin which provides us with a signal to eat, increases when we are in need of sleep so you may find yourself being hungry more often. When this happens it’s vital to drink plenty of water and remind yourself this is a hunger resulting from tiredness. Your body is confused due to tiredness; food will not solve this problem.

Metabolism is severely affected when our sleep pattern is disrupted. Studies show that metabolism is slowed down by as much as 30% when sleep deprived with the result that the fat burning process can significantly be lowered resulting in a much slower weight loss. This can potentially cause a person to give up on their goals and feel like they cannot lose weight.

More ghrelin plus less leptin equals weight gain. Therefore, you are eating more and your metabolism is slower when you are sleep deprived. So, trying to get a good night’s sleep plays an important role in losing weight.

Top Ten Tips To Get The Best Sleep

Many underlying health problems such as chronic pain, sleep apnoea or acid reflux can cause insomnia. But if your difficulty in sleeping is not due to health problems, here are some tips that can help you get back to sleep.

1. Stop Watching The Clock

Marking off the minutes only heightens your distress about being awake.

2. Try Relaxing Your Body To Fall Asleep

Working from your toes to your forehead, tightly tense each muscle group for five seconds, then relax.

3. If You Can’t Sleep – Get Out of Bed

If you can’t fall back to sleep within 20 minutes, get out of bed.  Use your “mind clock” to estimate how long you’ve been awake. After 20 minutes of wakefulness, get up and leave your bedroom. Don’t spend time in bed trying to fall asleep as you probably will start worrying about falling asleep and then learn to associate the bedroom with not sleeping well.

4. Read Or Listen

Read something uninteresting. Listen to relaxing music. When you start to feel drowsy, go back to bed.

5. Create A Sleeping Schedule

Create a consistent sleeping and waking schedule — even on the weekends and days off work. What works best is going to bed at the same time and waking up at same time every day.

6. No Caffeine Before Bed Time

Avoid consuming drinks or food with caffeine before bedtime. Abstain from caffeine for at least five to six hours before you plan to retire.

7. Make Your Sleeping Environment Comfortable

The room should have a temperature that is not too warm or too cold. Find a mattress and pillow with a firmness level that you find restful.

8. Look After Your Brain

One hour before bedtime, stop doing work or other mentally challenging tasks. Switch to something calming such as reading a book.

9. Use Your Bed Only For Sleep Or Intimacy

Do not watch television or play with electronic devices while lying in bed. Otherwise, we come to associate the bedroom with not sleeping.

Better nights sleep - ditch the mopile phone10. Ditch The Mobile In Your Bedroom.

Get a separate alarm clock in your bedroom, and charge your phone in another room. This way, you can go to sleep / wake up without getting sucked into your phone before you even get in / out of bed.

Blog Post by Michael O'Brien