Does sleeping lose weight? How sleep interferes with weight loss

During sleep, our body continues to consume energy and burn calories. For this and other reasons,  sleeping does not make you fat . On the contrary, quality of sleep is essential for weight loss and also for muscle growth (hypertrophy).

We can understand how sleep helps to lose weight by understanding the negative effects that our body suffers when we do not have quality sleep.

Sleeping poorly can affect your appetite, your mood, your willingness to exercise, triggering many other health problems that go beyond weight.

In addition, when we are not asleep, our brain begins to make wrong decisions, because the frontal lobe of the brain, which is fundamental for decision making and for controlling impulses, is impaired.

Added to these factors is also the fact that our brain reward center is exhausted and we have as a result an organism that has little resistance to treats.

There are several studies that seek to understand the relationship between sleep and obesity or the difficulty in maintaining weight. For example, a study published by the  American Journal of Clinical Nutrition  sought to show how our bodies behave when they are exhausted due to poor sleep quality.

In these conditions, we become more vulnerable and without control of our own food. Thus, we may end up acquiring habits like making snacks at night, usually rich in  carbohydrates .

Read more: Foods rich in carbohydrates: what to eat and what to avoid?

In the case of a study by the University of Chicago, participants who had sleep deprivation opted for snacks with 2 times more fat than those who maintained a sleep routine for at least 8 hours daily.

There are also studies that show a very direct relationship between individuals who sleep less and the greater likelihood of becoming obese, as this is a factor that interferes with the production of hormones responsible for increased hunger and appetite, as well as interfering with the choice of food. .

Therefore, as a form of prevention and treatment, health professionals should also encourage patients to seek a better quality of sleep.

The hormones of satiety and hunger

Sleeping also helps you lose weight because it is during this process that our body releases the hormones leptin and ghrelin. They are essential for the body to remain balanced.

Leptin is a hormone produced by fat cells that acts directly on the central nervous system. Its main function is to promote a lower food intake, sending messages to the brain that the storage of energy in the form of fat is enough for the person to maintain himself.

It is also important to accelerate the metabolism of fats and glucose, which provides energy expenditure and helps to regulate the neuroendocrine system.

This hormone is also released while we sleep, especially during the early hours of the morning. In this way, it manages to inhibit appetite.

Ghrelin, on the other hand, is known to be the hunger hormone, as it stimulates appetite. It is produced in the stomach, hypothalamus and cells of the pancreas, and is normally secreted when we are on an empty stomach.

Thus, these two hormones need to be released in a balanced way, as they have opposite effects. However, they have as a common characteristic the fact that they are released during sleep.

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