How much sleep do you average? 5, 6, 7, 8 hours?
Is sleep a priority for you or a luxury?
I know all of us have different life demands; maybe you work overnight, work late, tend to a newborn or you’re just a night owl.
I want to plug you in to why your sleep is important to your hormone health and a healthy weight. IF you do this right you could see great results while you’re catching your zzzz.
Studies show us that when we don’t get enough sleep our bodies begin to increase our hunger hormone ghrelin and decrease our satisfied hormone, leptin. The longer your body is awake the more likely it’s going to experience hunger, boredom or a false feeling of needing to eat.
Women have a special circadian clock that, if managed right, will help us manage our fat stores and lose unwanted fat.
Your fat is bigger than just unwanted storage, it dictates alot of your overall health.
Your fat cells are very strategic and they are working FOR you at certain times of the day. In contrast they can also work AGAINST you at certain times of the day, namely at night.
The goal here is to maximize our circadian clock so that we can lose unhealthy fat.
Here are a few ways to achieve that:
- Watch your lighting (lighting in your rooms, your devices etc…) Get natural light exposure early in the day and limit blue light exposure as the day progresses.
- Eat Regularly (avoid skipping around, forgetting to eat and not eating altogether) This teaches your internal clock not to rely on you for nourishment and promotes storage of fat cells. KEY: Eat during the day and eliminate eating as the sun sets.
- Manage your insulin and blood sugar by attacking the right fats, the thinning fats – Sleep in a cool room around 66 degrees. Set a bedtime. Sleep naked often, it regulates body temperature and increases your calorie burning fats. ALL of these contribute to managing your internal AC unit, your fat cellular function and your cortisol levels.
- Eat healthy evening snacks that promote great sleep. The key to these snacks are NOT sugar. Sugar has been infamously synonymous with “snack” but we are changing that perception. The right “nightfood” as Dr. Breus calls them, will have an enzyme called serotonin. It may also be a nightfood high in magnesium. Both of these contribute to calm, rest, sleep and balanced internal levels of “feel good”. A few nightfoods include kiwi, (organic) turkey slices, nuts, a serving of eggs. Remember: everything within moderation, even “healthy foods”. I often enjoy a magnesium tea called CALM. It has a light lemon taste and is great for relaxing the body as well as those who may experience PMS.
For most prioritizing sleep will be a challenge. It’s not impossible but it’s going to take your deliberate effort. When you prioritize your health your strengthen your well-being.
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