It’s not a Myth, your Body needs A Good Night’s Sleep
If you are putting in the work at the gym every day, eating healthy, and still not seeing the weight loss results you want or a change in your energy levels, lack of sleep may be the culprit.
Did you know that an estimated 30% of American adults reported sleeping less than six hours a night? What’s more alarming is that people continue to put sleep in the back burner in order to keep up with the demands of a hectic, technology-driven society when the total opposite should be happening—sleep needs to be at the top of your to-do list!
The human body needs sleep as much as it needs to breathe to function properly because recovery is crucial. This is the time when your body uses cells to repair damage and creates antibodies to fight infections and keep you healthy. In addition, sleep time provides for new learning and memory pathways to be formed in the brain. While you are sleeping, heart rate and blood pressure slow down to give your heart a much needed break; one single night of sleep deprivation can cause your blood pressure to skyrocket the next day.
And because sleep is vital, it also affects hormone production and may be the reason your weight loss efforts have stalled. Several studies have shown a link between sleep deprivation and an increased risk of obesity and diabetes. Why? Well, let’s consider the “hunger” hormones leptin and ghrelin. Leptin is the hormone that decreases your appetite by notifying your brain that you’ve had enough food and have an energy balance while ghrelin is the hormone that stimulates your appetite, usually increasing before a meal and decreasing right after. Ghrelin is also released by your body when you are under stress, thus making you want to reach for unneeded snacks.
Consider what happens to your body when you are sleep deprived—you are irritable and feel tired, you have trouble making decisions and solving problems, you can’t focus, you are more easily confused and more likely to get sick. Essentially, your body is under stress and your ghrelin levels rise. Scientific studies have found that subjects who were sleep deprived experienced declines in leptin levels and an increase in ghrelin, which in turn increased their hunger, appetite and the cravings for high carbohydrate foods.
A study also found that, following sleep loss, a group of healthy individuals started showing blood sugar and insulin levels similar to those seeing in people developing diabetes.
Whether it is for weight loss purposes or to simply improve your quality of life, sleep must become a priority.
The most important goal in functional medicine is the optimization of health and balance, which cannot happen without adequate sleep. If you are unable to get your eight hours a night, at Bellissimo Medical we can help you find the root of the problem as well as guide you into making lifestyle changes that will restore your good health and well-being.
Call us today and schedule your free consultation at 954.384.8989. Dr. Jean-Claude Nerette practices Functional Medicine and is Board Certified in both Internal Medicine and Anti-Aging & Regenerative Medicine and Stephanie Muniz Nerette is a Board Certified Nurse Practitioner and a Diplomate to the Board of Anti-Aging Medicine.
Bellissimo Medical is located at
2665 Executive Park Drive, Suite #3, in Weston.