Losing Weight Is as Easy as Falling to Sleep

 

Finding the extra time to sleep may be the dieting trick you’re looking for

What if you could make losing weight easier just by doing a makeover on your sleep habits? Well it’s true, you can. At least according to a recent Glamour Magazine study when sleep doctors created a weight loss plan with one simple goal, get at least seven and a half hours of sleep each night. That’s all! No diet or exercise changes and in ten weeks the participants lost between six and fifteen pounds. One tester couldn’t stick to the plan because of a crazy work schedule, but she did lose two and a half inches off her bust, waist and hips.

Over two-dozen studies show that there is a connection between weight loss and sleep habits. In one 16-year study from Case Western University of almost 70,000 women, those who slept five hours or less were 30 percent more likely to be 30 lbs. or more overweight. Is the national obesity crisis also a sleep crisis too? The average woman gets 6 hours and 40 minutes of sleep. Where do we find the time to make that seven and a half hours? It means fifty minutes less television, working or playing on the computer. But that one thing might mean the difference between losing those extra pounds or gaining them.

How does this sleep – weight loss connection work? Top New Jersey pulmonary doctor, Federico Cerrone, MD, who specializes in sleep disorders offers, “We know that sleep deprivation, as well as weight gain, can change your hormones that control appetite and appetite suppression.” So when we don’t get enough sleep we are naturally hungrier and we eat more. Also, our energy is low and we often will grab a high carbohydrate or sugary snack to get a boost.  Researchers at the University of Chicago found that participants in one study who had five and a half hours sleep ate 221 more calories of snacks than when they had eight hours of sleep. Another factor is how your body stores and breaks down fat and muscle is connected to sleep. During deep sleep the body secretes growth hormone which when in short supply turns extra calories into stored fat on the belly, butt and thighs.

One of the factors to consider when taking off those extra pounds beyond getting to bed earlier is that there other physical and psychophysiological reasons for sleep issues. Often these can be easily treated making the goal of enough good quality sleep immediately achievable. Then taking off those extra pounds may not be so hard. Dr. Cerrone adds, “A lot of patients come to me and they say, “You know, Doc?  I’m overweight, I know I’m overweight; I’m trying to lose weight.  I diet, I exercise – I can’t lose weight.”  And I tell them, “It really may just be related to your sleep problem.” No doubt, obstructive sleep apnea changes your metabolism, it can change your hormones, and make it much more difficult to lose weight.  So yes, that could be a sign that you may have a sleep disorder, as well.  And maybe you should speak to your doctor about that problem.” With 65 percent of the population overweight, a large percentage will have a sleep disorder. “It’s estimated that 25% of males probably do have obstructive sleep apnea, and 9-10% of females, especially after menopause.” Offers Cerrone.

To find out if you have a sleep disorder, Dr. Cerrone is providing a sleep risk assessment . “We developed this questionnaire, or what we call a risk assessment … and by sitting down at your computer, within a few minutes, you’ll know whether you’re at high risk for obstructive sleep apnea and whether you should be taking the next step in getting treatment for this problem.” A basic Body Mass Index or BMI and some lifestyle answers is all that it takes for a fairly good prediction if you are at risk for a sleep disorder. Dr. Cerrone and the team at Atlantic Health Sleep Centers also provides you with a free personal report. As a bonus, you will be able to watch our interview with Dr. Cerrone as he answers the top questions about weight loss and sleep.

Naturally, if your risk assessment indicates you may have a sleep problem, it should be followed up with a consultation with a physician who specializes in sleep disorders to get the proper diagnosis and treatment. It’s important that you get help for a sleep disorder right away. Especially, with serious conditions like a sleep apnea treatment, it will not only improve your life, but it might save it. Once treated you will be on your way to sleeping the pounds away.

Belly Fat – The Great Sleep Motivator

There are many advantages to getting a good night’s sleep, which include improved memory, increased longevity, lowered anxiety and … drum roll please … easier weight maintenance. These all sound like great reasons to get a solid seven to nine hours. But for me it is the belly fat that pushed me over the edge and into bed early. It’s a very personal reason. I want to look good and feel great. Think about it though. If I get good quality sleep I also get all those other benefits as well. Who wouldn’t want to live longer? However, with an epidemic of child obesity staggering the nation and our healthcare system, you would think everyone would be getting to bed early or going to a sleep center to find out if they have a sleep problem. Whether it is ignorance or apathy the problem persists and nobody is talking about the scientific connection between obesity and sleep. So I will start by just telling you my experience. I hate belly fat so I had a sleep study, got treated and now it’s gone.

Sometimes the best motivation to improve your life is the one that is most personal. We could go on about the connection between weight loss and sleep for example. Did you know people with sleep disorders tend to be fatigued, which leads to disinterest in exercise. They also have increased hunger levels despite the fact that they are not using more calories. Lack of sleep can stimulate the production of ghrelin, a hormone which increases appetite.   This results in more weight gain. Treatment of sleep disorders may help a person lose weight and weight loss will improve sleep apnea.  Information is a powerful tool but motivation often comes from within.

In addition to the obvious health benefits of good-quality sleep, it turns out many people really do have their own highly individual motivations for sleeping soundly. It could be playing a better golf game the next day, being more alert at work or simply feeling less reactive to life’s little annoyances. You know, that nagging motivation that pushes you to turn off the television, stop answering that email or gets you to turn in at a decent hour. You now know mine was belly fat. I think that if you simply find that one great motivator and remind your self of it, by posting it on the refrigerator or on a sticky next to the computer, it may just make the difference between feeling better and chronic health problems. Besides you could live longer, have less stress, have better concentration and memory and oh yeah … lose that stubborn belly fat.

If you are feeling especially proactive, I ask that you share your motivation in the comments section below. Finding out your motivation by reading someone else’s may be a way for you to sleep better. Sharing your motivation may make someone else feel good too. Who knows, my belly fat confessional or your personal motivation for better sleep may actually help with child obesity. If your sleep problem is persistent, please go to a sleep center and get it checked out.

P.S.  Atlantic Health Sleep Centers also offers a free sleep risk assessment that by sitting down at your computer, within a few minutes, you’ll know whether you’re at high risk for a sleep disorder and whether you should be taking the next step in getting treatment for this problem. This includes a basic BMI or Body Mass Index and some lifestyle answers. It fast, easy and includes a free personal report if you sign-in right now. As a bonus, you will be able to watch our interview with medical director, Federico Cerrone, MD a top New Jersey pulmonary doctor who specializes in sleep disorders as he answers the top questions about sleep.

Obesity – Signs Of Diabetes In Teens Connected To Sleep and Obesity

Sixty-two teenagers in a recent study who struggled with obesity but slept seven to eight and a half hours a night were at a lower risk of developing Type Two Diabetes. Research published in the Diabetes Care Journal found that teenagers kept their blood sugar levels at an optimum level when they got good-quality sleep. This reduces the risk of glucose levels soaring and developing diabetes and other health complications. The study also showed that quality, or deep sleep also affected insulin levels. While obesity may require a visit to the weight loss center, for teens with signs of diabetes they may want to go to the sleep center first.

According to the researchers, the key to keeping the insulin and glucose levels at a healthy balance was connected to a regular sleep pattern with good-quality sleep. These findings are supported with a previous study in 2007, where it was shown that sleep deprived adults were more likely to develop diabetes than those who got optimum hours of sleep. Once again quality of sleep can be as important as how sleep pattern. But quality sleep may be affected by physical and psychophysiological problems connected to obesity.

Top New Jersey pulmonary doctor, Federico Cerrone, MD, who specializes in sleep disorders offers these insights, “Approximately 65% of Americans are overweight or obese.  A large percentage of these patients will have obstructive sleep apnea.  It’s estimated that 25% of males probably do have obstructive sleep apnea, and 9-10% of females, especially after menopause.” So sleep disorders like sleep apnea greatly affect the quality of sleep. But effective sleep apnea treatments can dramatically improve sleep quality and also help improve treatment of the diabetes. Doctor Cerrone adds, “Many times when we treat the obstructive sleep apnea, and those patients with type 2 diabetes, we find that they need less medication, and that their diabetes is better controlled when we treat the obstructive sleep apnea.”

So if you are a teen or adult, are overweight or obese and have diabetes or a family history of it, you owe it to your health to see if you have a sleep disorder. The good news is that it’s easy and it’s free. To find out right away if you may have a sleep disorder, Dr. Cerrone is providing a free online sleep risk assessment. “We developed this questionnaire, or what we call a risk assessment … and by sitting down at your computer, within a few minutes, you’ll know whether you’re at high risk for obstructive sleep apnea and whether you should be taking the next step in getting treatment for this problem.” Based on these results, you can make a fairly good prediction if you are at risk for a sleep disorder.

Dr. Cerrone and the team at Atlantic Health Sleep Centers also provides you with a free personal report if you sign-in right now. As a bonus, you will be able to watch our interview with Dr. Cerrone as he answers the top questions about weight loss and sleep.

Naturally, if your risk assessment indicates you may have a sleep problem, it should be followed up with a consultation with a physician who specializes in sleep disorders to get the proper diagnosis and treatment. It’s important that you get help for a sleep disorder right away. Especially, with serious conditions like a sleep apnea treatment, it will not only improve your life, but it might save it. Also, if you are or know a teen struggling with obesity and signs of diabetes, let them know that besides the weight loss center the sleep center may help them more than they realized.