3 unbelievable ways sleep will help you lose weight plus the secret tip for a great night’s sleep
You’ve started your fitness journey. You’re watching your nutrition and you’re making it to the gym every day. But are you missing the last step to healthy living? Getting enough sleep is absolutely essential to weight loss and a healthy lifestyle.
Sleep has numerous benefits for the body, but I’m only going to focus on three that will help you on your weight loss journey! Please, please, please, make sleep a priority! You will see better and faster results if you give your body everything it needs: food, exercise and sleep!
Going to sleep early can stop cravings
Let’s keep this one basic, if you aren’t awake, you can’t eat! Going to bed early will prevent you from a lot of unnecessary late night munching. Most people end up eating more in the evenings because they are home and have food easily accessible.
In fact, we need fewer calories the closer we get to bedtime. You aren’t exerting a lot of effort to sleep, so those extra calories you consume at night aren’t able to burn off before bed, which leads to weight gain.
If you’re tracking your macros, then you know exactly how many calories you’re consuming and how many calories you’re burning. Finishing your macros late at night will not result in fat gain, but you will likely see a higher number on the scale because the food is still in your body - it hasn’t had a chance to be used. It is better to eat those calories earlier so you have the energy you need to make it through the day!
In fact, eating too close to bedtime can actually prevent you from falling asleep because your body is trying to digest and use the fuel you just gave it. If you eat too much before bed, your blood pressure will rise and you will be more susceptible to heartburn.
Getting enough sleep will help you be more productive
You may be asking how does being more productive help you lose weight? Again, it’s simple, if you are low on energy from being overtired, you’re not going to put in the effort to do what’s best for your body.
If you’re sleep deprived, you’re going to have less energy to plan and prep healthy meals, or even to make healthy choices! Nutritious food is not as convenient as fast food. I’ll be totally honest with you, it’s way easier to go through the drive-thru than it is to cook a meal for your family. If you’re exhausted, you’re going to be tempted to take the easier path.
Lack of sleep can mess up your motivation to workout. Not only are you less inclined to work out, but you’re less inclined to move at all! When you’re tired nothing sounds better than sitting on the couch doing absolutely nothing. Am I right?
These all tend to build on each other and pretty soon, your lack of sleep has driven you to foods that aren’t nourishing your body. When your body doesn’t have the fuel it needs, it makes you feel more tired. When you’re absolutely exhausted you don’t have the motivation - or energy - to exercise. It’s a vicious cycle that can easily be solved by getting enough sleep.
Sleep helps you gain muscle
Our bodies have a lot of work to do while we’re sleeping. Sleep is the body’s time to repair itself from the stress we have put on it. In order to lose weight and gain muscle, our bodies need downtime.
The Human Growth Hormone (HGH) is essential to building muscle. When you sleep HGH is able to absorb amino acids (protein) from the foods you ate during the day. If you don’t get enough sleep, HGH doesn’t have the time to replenish your muscles so that they grow.
A 2011 study actually proved that people who get less sleep have a lower muscle mass. The test subjects were split into two groups. Both groups followed a calorie regulated diet, but one group got 5.5 hours of sleep and the second group got 8.5 hours of sleep.
The group who got 5.5 hours of sleep had 60% less muscle mass at the end of the study; while the group that got 8.5 hours of sleep only had 40% less muscle mass.
If you want to see gains, you have to let your body recover by getting a good amount of good sleep! Yes, sleep quality is important too!
How to get a better night’s sleep
If you have trouble falling asleep, if you have restless sleep, or if you suffer from insomnia, then this is going to be a lifesaver for you!
The secret to better sleep is magnesium! People who suffer from sleep issues usually have a magnesium deficiency. When you have enough magnesium, you will experience more restful, restorative sleep.
Magnesium is an essential mineral. Our bodies need it in large quantities, but our bodies don’t produce it. We have to get magnesium from our foods.
Magnesium is found in
Dark leafy greens
Nuts and seeds
Unprocessed whole grains
Most people lack magnesium because the traditional American diet strips out nutrient-dense foods. I recommend using a magnesium supplement because you’ll ensure you’re getting enough magnesium. I use Natural Calm magnesium supplement because it’s simple to take and it tastes good, I promise! You can use the code: MOMCALM for 25% off your order.
If you want more sleep and weight loss tips and tricks, check out my ebook, Macros Made Easy. In there I share my favorite tip for falling asleep faster.
If you want to learn more about how sleep is affecting your weight loss journey, or you need to see how much sleep you should be getting in order to reach your goals, book a free discovery call with me. I’m happy to help you along with your health journey!