How Does Sleeping More Help You Lose Weight?

When you are sleeping more, you are resting and not eating which helps your body lose weight.

In a 2017 study published in the International Journal of Obesity, participants were either instructed to sleep 4 hours per night or told to sleep 9 hours per night for three weeks. After the treatment period, the participants who slept more showed significant weight loss, with an average drop of 6.6 pounds in the 4 hour group and 7.7 pounds in the 9 hour group. When compared to a control group, the sleep extension groups had a significantly higher rate of dietary compliance and were more likely to have a positive psychological state. The study authors concluded that shortening the time spent in bed may improve diet and weight loss outcomes.

In another study, this time in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers observed that people who slept for fewer than 4 hours per night were more likely to consume higher calorie foods and were more likely to be overweight or obese. Participants spent an average of 4 hours per night in bed (lights out at midnight), with a range from 3.5 to 5.5 hours. Those who slept 5.5 hours per night had a 64% decreased risk of becoming overweight or obese over the course of 12 years as compared to those who slept 3.5 hours per night. Those who slept an hour longer had a 33% decreased risk.

So, if you are looking to shed some pounds, why not give sleeping more a try? You might be surprised by how much extra sleep you need to lose weight and how much better you feel when you get it.

Why Sleeping More Is Good For You

When you are sleeping more, you are resting and not eating which helps your body lose weight.

While eating less is positive, R&D in the food and drink industry estimate that Americans now consume about 300 million extra calories per day as compared to what was considered safe to consume in the 1960s. What is more, studies have shown that those who sleep less than 6 hours per day have an increased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. In fact, a 2017 review of existing research found that short sleep is “strongly and consistently associated” with weight gain and other health problems. Furthermore, the chances of you getting sick from overeating are greatly reduced when you are asleep (at least temporarily).

Why is sleeping more beneficial for weight loss? First, when you are sleeping more, you are not consuming calories, thus not adding extra weight to your body. Second, when asleep, your body’s natural rhythms slow down, resulting in less energy being burned (by the body).

How Long Does It Take To See Results?

In the 2017 study discussed above, a majority of the participants saw results after three weeks of sleeping more. However, if you are looking to lose weight effectively and healthily, you may need to try something different. In the study, the control group that was not given any instructions about sleeping more had an average weight loss of 1.4 pounds over the three-week period. The intervention group that was given instructions to sleep 4 hours per night had an average weight loss of 2.9 pounds, and the intervention group that was given instructions to sleep 9 hours per night had an average weight loss of 4 pounds.

If you want to lose weight effectively and healthily, you may need to try something different. Some people have reported weight loss in as little as one night of sleeping more, while others have needed to try multiple nights of increased sleep to see results. In order to determine how much sleep you need to lose weight, you will need to try a few nights of progressively longer sleep. Once you find the sweet spot, you will be able to maintain your weight loss by continuing to sleep for as long as you need to.

Sleeping More Can Help With Other Issues As Well

Apart from helping you lose weight, sleeping more can also do wonders for your other wellness issues. In a 2017 study published in Obesity, researchers found that sleeping more can help treat or manage type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, and heart disease. They suggest that sleep extension may be a valuable adjunctive therapy that can enhance weight loss outcomes among people with these disorders.

Some researchers suggest that the hormone melatonin, which is secreted by your pineal gland at night, can influence appetite. Melatonin levels peak in the evening and then gradually decline as you begin to sleep. Shortening the time spent in bed may improve diet and weight loss outcomes.

How To Sleep More Effectively

If you are looking to shed pounds, sleeping more can help you lose weight. But, how do you sleep more effectively? Try these tips.

Set A Bedtime Routine

One way to sleep more effectively is to establish and follow a regular bedtime routine. It is typically best to go to sleep at the same time every night and get up at the same time every day. Sleeping in a different time zone than your body is used to can disrupt your sleep-wake cycle, causing you to sleep less. Going to bed and getting up at the same time each day also allows for better sleep quality and reduces the daytime fatigue that can sometimes accompany a change in sleeping schedules. As your body gets used to sleeping at the same time each night, your sleep duration will gradually increase.

Skip The Coffee And Sugar Before Bed

If you are looking for an energy boost just before bed, then caffeine, especially in the form of coffee, can be helpful. However, if you are trying to lose weight, then you should avoid eating or drinking anything with caffeine in it just before bedtime. The reason is that caffeine can stay in your system for several hours after you consume it, which gives you a chance to eat something that is high in calories. Eating something before bed can cause you to sleep less, so if your goal is to sleep more, then avoiding caffeine intake in the evening is a great way to go.

Try Different Sleeping Masks

Another way to improve your sleep and weight loss outcomes is by trying different sleeping masks. Different sleeping masks can help filter out different wavelengths of light, allowing you to get a better night’s sleep and preventing you from waking up in the middle of the night. For example, some sleeping masks can block out blue light, which can help to promote wakefulness and prevent you from sleeping too much. If you are looking to shed pounds, then wearing a sleeping mask with blue light blocking could be a great way to go.

Stay Hydrated

Dehydration can cause a number of problems, including a feeling of weariness, poor concentration, and even drowsiness. If you are looking to lose weight, then staying hydrated can be key to getting a good night’s sleep and avoiding many of the daytime consequences that come with dehydration. It is best to drink plenty of water each day, and try to avoid dehydration by drinking more fresh water than you would typically drink. While you may not always get the opportunity to drink what you want, dehydration can still be a problem if you are not careful, even when you are sleeping. Becoming dehydrated while sleeping can cause you to wake up with a headache, so it is advisable to drink sufficient amounts of water throughout the day when using a CPAP machine or sleep apnea mask.

Avoid Stressful Living

One way to sleep more effectively is to avoid as much stress as possible. If you are constantly stressed, you will find it hard to relax, and the constant relaxation can interfere with your sleep-wake cycle. Avoiding stress is usually best accomplished by not taking on more than you can handle, avoiding conflicts, and doing whatever you can to make life simpler and less stressful. Worrying and stressing about matters that you cannot control will not help you sleep more. Take a break whenever you need it and try to work on something that makes you happy. If you think that your sleep is significantly affected by your mental state, then try to change that by taking on a new mental attitude, whatever it may be.

Is It Better To Sleep In The Day Or In The Night?

Now that you know how much sleep you need to lose weight, you may be curious about whether it is better to sleep in the day or in the night. The short answer is that it does not matter as much as you think it does. There are advantages and disadvantages to both options. For example, sleeping during the day has the advantage of giving you more sunlight, which can help your body produce more vitamin D. On the other hand, sleeping in the night can prevent you from waking up with the sun and getting a nice natural tan. If you have someone who needs to get up early to go to work, then sleeping during the day can be an option worth considering.