By Guest Blogger Sloan Luckie
Do you find yourself constantly fatigued and devoid of energy? Are you in a constant battle to lose that extra 10+ pounds? Have you experienced plateaus in developing muscle mass?
Well, one change that may help is simply getting more…sleep.
A lack of sleep can give your body a one-two punch:
You eat more fatty foods: A New York Obesity Research Center study has shown that a lack of adequate sleep (7- 8 hrs.) may cause you to eat more high calorie, high carb, and/ or high fat foods the following day. Those who consistently get an inadequate amount of sleep have been shown to consume approximately 300 calories per day more than those who get 7-8 hours of sleep.
Limits muscle growth: Muscle plays an important role in burning calories. The pituitary gland, located at the base of the brain, produces growth hormone needed for muscle mass. The production of this hormone mostly occurs during sleep. If you are not getting adequate sleep, your body isn’t producing the optimal amount of growth hormone. This leads to less than optimal muscle mass, which contributes to your body burning less than optimal calories.
To assist in getting high-quality sleep, sleep like a vampire! Whether “Bram Stoker’s Dracula”, “The Lost Boys”, “True Blood”, or “Blacula”, they all:
- Sleep in the dark: Your room should be completely dark. Curtains should be drawn shut. TVs, cell phones, laptops should be shut off to reduce the amount of light (and sounds) in the room. The light from an analog clock could also disrupt your sleep. I’ve gone back to using the traditional alarm clock to reduce the amount of light in the room during sleep. The glow from TVs, cell phones, laptops, analog clocks and other similar items can disrupt melatonin, a hormone that helps control your sleep and wake cycles.
- Sleep in cool temperatures: Keep your room at a cool temperature. Approximately 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit. This lowers your core body temperature and can assist in better sleep. Too cool for you? Wearing socks to bed may help.
There also may be medical reasons for inadequate sleep. Check with your doctor to test for sleep apnea, a chronic sleeping disorder.
So, sleep like a vampire. It can assist with weight loss, muscle growth, and give you the energy you desire.
If you like this post, you can get more helpful tips on how to improve sleep, nutrition and fitness to attain and maintain optimal health in Body Under Construction.
About Sloan Luckie.
With a relentless passion for a lifestyle of health and wellness, Sloan J. Luckie is the author of Body Under Construction: How to Build and Maintain Optimal Health at Any Age, an ISSA-certified personal trainer and a leading expert in health, nutrition and fitness. His live presentations and the pages of his book are inspiring people around the world to adopt healthy habits to shape their bodies and their lives. Luckie’s unique philosophy on building and maintaining optimal health has garnered great public and media attention. He has appeared on NBC’s “The Talk with Marion Brooks,” NY1 News with Cheryl Wills, graced the pages of Syd Jerome magazine, and conducted companion shopping events, fitness demonstrations, and book signings throughout the country.
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