Sleep is a hot health topic these days, with many of us not getting enough and ever-increasing evidence of its benefits. Poor quality sleep is associated with hunger, being sedentary and weight gain (not to mention feeling tired and not performing at your best). To make matters worse, weight gain often has a negative impact on sleep, making these two conditions unfortunate bedfellows (sorry).
But new research suggests that you can reverse both of these conditions at the same time! The studies show that our diet can improve sleep apnoea, a condition in which people have severely interrupted sleep. This research looked at the effects of our diet on people with both normal sleep patterns and those who get inadequate and low-quality sleep. The scientists also looked at how lack of sleep affects weight regain and how to prevent it.
When 195 adults went on The 1:1 Diet, on average, after eight weeks, they lost over two stone – a typical result for our diet – and over the following year, they had longer and better-quality sleep. The researchers also looked at the effects of exercise, a weight loss drug called liraglutide and how sleep affected weight regain.
Over the following year, those who normalised their sleep didn’t gain any weight back, seemingly confirming the relationship between sleep and weight gain. Also, those who exercised also slept better. The weight-loss drug didn’t improve sleep quality, but it improved duration for the first 26 weeks but by the end of the year, it was no longer providing this benefit.
So, if you are caught in the cycle of poor sleep and weight gain, The 1:1 Diet can benefit both and give you a better chance of keeping the weight off. Also, if you are interested in more ways to up your sleep game, besides exercise, here are a few below…
Routine - Try to stick to the same routine every day, going to bed and getting up at the same time.
Bath - Have a warm bath before bed to relax your muscles ready for sleeping.
To-do list - Write a to-do list for the next day, knowing you have a plan for the next day will help you switch off for the evening and clear your mind.
Blue light reduction - Avoid going on your phone or watching TV too close to your bedtime, as the blue light given off screens will have a negative effect on your sleep. Instead, try reading a book for 30 minutes before you’re planning on going to sleep. Listen to relaxing music or white noise whilst you’re dropping off to sleep, this will distract the mind and calm you.
Caffeine - Caffeine and nicotine are notorious sleep interrupters and certain medications may disrupt sleep, so you may want to talk to your doctor.
Eating late - Try to avoid eating late at night.
For more information regarding the Steps and to start your weight-loss transformation, chat to a friendly Consultant today!