November 27, 2021

Weight Loss Advice: Stop Skimping on Sleep

Fat Loss Tied to Sleep

Study Finds Fat Loss Tied to Sleep

If you are one of the millions of people trying to lose weight, a recent research report has identified a technique that may improve your results: Get a good night’s sleep.

Sleeping well not only enhances fat reduction for dieters, it can help in controlling hunger, the study reports.

The research, conducted by the University of Chicago, examined ten overweight people, between the ages of 35 and 49, who closely followed a calorie restricted diet.

The participants underwent a two-week period where they stayed in bed for eight and a half hours a night averaging 7 hours and 25 minutes of sleep. Additionally, they a second two-week period where they were restricted to 5 hours and 30 minutes in bed, sleeping an average of five hours and 14 minutes per night.

The report states that the participants lost an average of 6.6lb during each 14 day period, no matter how much sleep they received.

However, for those who received adequate sleep, over 50 percent of the body weight they dropped consisted of fat compared to only 25 percent fat when their sleep was restricted. The remaining portion of the weight loss was lean body mass.

Getting sufficient sleep also made it easier for the dieters to control their hunger..

The dieters’ levels of the hormone ghrelin, which triggers hunger and lowers the expenditure of energy, remained unchanged when they spent 8 1/2 hours in bed. However, during the two weeks that they spent 5 1/2 hours in bed, levels of ghrelin levels in the volunteers rose.

The study participants adopted a well balanced diet plan with calorie consumption limited to 90% of the amount each individual required in order to maintain their weight without exercising.

Their caloric intake over both periods, approximately 1,450 each day, was held at the same levels. They spent their days engaged in leisure activities or reasonably low levels of home or office-like work.

The study director, Plamen Penev, of the University of Chicago, pointed out that skimping on sleep, a quite common practice in our busy society, seems to undermine our efforts to reduce body fat by dieting. The study showed that inadequate sleep reduced fat loss by over 50 percent.