Since your body is repairing physically and in other ways while you sleep, you are burning calories. Naturally, this is not at the same rate as when you are awake and active, however. So the logical person might think if you sleep less, and are active more, you will burn more calories.
This may be true, but studies have shown that people who get 8 hours of sleep eat fewer calories overall. One study said the difference is about 300 calories per day, which over a months time could be a 3-pound change in weight.Since your body is repairing physically and in other ways, while you sleep, you are burning calories #8HoursANight Click To Tweet
A Stanford study explains how this difference in calorie intake may work. When you sleep less than you should, your body starts to produce two hormones, ghrelin and leptin, in less than ideal proportions. Ghrelin stimulates appetite, and leptin tells your brain when your stomach is full. If you are not sleeping enough you may produce more ghrelin and feel always hungry, without producing enough leptin to feel full.
“Reduced sleep leads to weight gain due to changes in the basal metabolic rate (metabolism) as we become more tired. Tiredness literally slows us down and stops our body from burning fat.” Jonathan P. Wade
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This is a proven reason why sleeping 8 hours a night is important for your health. If you sleep less than ideal numbers of hours but eat exactly to the calories your body needs for the day, you probably won’t gain weight. Unfortunately, these hormones in your body make it more difficult to have the pure willpower to stick with a strict diet.
Sleep affects more than just how alert you are the following day. Join the conversation by using #8HoursANight and see your posts appear on our Community Page.
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