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Lack of Sleep May Be Sabotaging Your Diet

A study published in the October 2010 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine recently found that not getting enough sleep may sabotage your weight loss efforts.

The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Chicago who recruited 10 overweight men and women for the study.

The participants all stayed in a sleep lab for two weeks while following a calorie restricted diet.

During the first week, the participants were allowed to sleep for 8.5 hours and for the second week they slept for 5.5 hours.

The researchers found that the participants lost the same amount of weight during both sleeping conditions but when their sleep was restricted they mainly lost muscle rather than fat.

The researchers also found that when sleep was restricted, dieters reported much higher levels of hunger during the day. In addition, they had higher levels of an appetite-boosting hormone called acylated ghrelin, leading the researchers to hypothesize that people will have a tendency to eat more when they get less sleep.

Further studies with larger populations will be necessary to confirm the findings of this recent study, however, the observations in this current study align with previous research linking sleeping habits to body weight.

The previous research has found a significant difference in body weight between those who consistently do not get enough sleep and people that get at least 7 hours of sleep per night. It has also shown that lack of sleep is linked to increased blood pressure and increased risk of stroke and cardiovascular disease.

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