You know the drill. The day is finally over and you collapse onto the couch vowing to unwind for just a few minutes before you head to bed. Before you know it, you have been on the couch for hours watching television or wrapped up in whatever happens to populate your social media newsfeed.
As crazy as it might sound, staying up late could be sabotaging your weight loss goals.
What seems like innocent relaxation could be causing you to pack on the pounds. Irregular and poor sleep patterns have proven to be a culprit in increasing body mass index counts. This becomes increasingly apparent among college students, particularly college freshman. The term “freshman fifteen” had to come from somewhere, right?
A recent study also highlighted bedtimes as a “potential target for weight management.” It’s probably worth mentioning that sleeping burns more calories than watching television. It’s also worth noting that regular exercise helps you sleep better. So, stay active and sleep better. Stay up and weigh more. When you decrease your sleep, you are just asking to increase your waistline.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when deciding between one more episode of your favorite show or an extra hour between the sheets:
• The average adult needs 7-9 hours of sleep a night.
• Consistency is key. Even if you are getting adequate sleep, a later than usual bedtime or varying sleep schedule can throw off your metabolism.
• A lack of sleep slows the metabolism, boosts hunger and impacts your decision-making abilities.
• You are more likely to make unhealthy snack choices in the wee hours of the morning. Hit the hay before you hit the pantry!
If you are struggling to fall asleep at night and think you might have a sleep disorder, please speak to your doctor or contact us for help. It’s time for you to get to bed at a decent hour!