A few weeks ago I posted on whether or not your sleep patterns had any correlation with your fat loss efforts in the post Does Lack of Sleep Make You Fat. In that post I wrote that one thing you can do to help yourself lose fat is to get good quality sleep for at least 7 – 8 hours a night. Heaven knows that’s easier said than done sometimes.
Let’s see……..Get the kids to bed, make sure their lunches are made, homework’s done, and clothes are ready for school, go over the presentation for your big client tomorrow, fix that running faucet in the back bathroom, and go to the store for duct tape, spaghetti sauce, paper towels, light bulbs, eggs, and peanut butter. Add all that to cramming an hour or so for a set or two of tennis and maybe a few sets of dumbbell work, and who has the time for sleep?
With all of that stuff going on in most of our lives, cramming in the requisite sleep the experts tell us we need can, indeed, be just about impossible, or at least it feels that way. You may have to find a way to get it dome though, as more evidence is released seemingly every day that corroborates the fact that it is easier to lose fat with enough quality shut eye.
Here is some more….a brand new study conducted by the University of Chicago Sleep Research Laboratory for the National Institutes of Health by researchers Arlet V. Nedeltcheva, MD; Jennifer M. Kilkus, MS; Jacqueline Imperial, RN; Dale A. Schoeller, PhD; and Plamen D. Penev, MD, PhD backs up the findings of previous studies that demonstrate the need for sleep when you’re trying to lose fat.
What the study revealed was stunning. Fist of all, sleep not only had a huge effect on weight loss, but it was the kind of weight that subjects lost that was so exciting. It turns out that sleep had a positively huge effect on how much fat was lost, in addition to overall weight. They study found that reducing sleep from 8.5 hours per night to 5.5 hours (Gee, that number sounds all too familiar!) resulted in test subjects increasing the percentage of fat lost by 55%!
If you’re trying to lose fat, I’d say there can’t be a much easier way that sleeping it off. Of course you just can’t start a snoring program and watch the pounds drop away, as if by magic. Although that would be nice, some sort of calorie and/or activity adjustment to ensure a caloric deficit is still necessary. What the proper level of sleep can do for you though, is make sure that your dietary and exercise efforts aren’t all for naught.
How much sleep do you get every night? Do you think it would be tough to get the 8 and a half hours the study found optimum for fat loss? I know I’d sure find it difficult. What would you cut out of your life to get the extra sleep you need? One option would be to try and operate more efficiently, but again….easier said than done. If you have any ideas, I’d love to hear them.
Until next time…lose your belly fat.