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4 Benefits of a Good Night’s Sleep for Weight Management

Did you know that getting enough sleep may be just as important as your diet and exercise if your goal is to lose weight? 

Truth is, more than a third of Americans aren't getting enough sleep on a regular basis.  

Experts say you should aim to get between seven and eight hours of shut-eye each night, but what does that really mean for your health and how does it help you to lose weight? Let’s talk about it! 

Better Sleep can Enhance Physical Activity

Let’s be honest here... The temptation to skip the gym when you haven’t had a good night’s sleep is REAL. On the other hand, when you’ve had a full night's rest, not only will you be more motivated to workout, but your athletic performance will increase as well. This includes an increase in: 

  • reaction time
  • fine motor skills
  • muscular power
  • endurance
  • problem solving skills

Sleep and physical activity go hand-in-hand. A lack of sleep decreases physical activity, and lack of physical activity may lead to worsened sleep

It May Decrease Cravings 

When you’re overtired, your brain's reward centers rev up, looking for something that feels good. Your sleep-deprived brain may have trouble saying no to a second slice of cake when you probably would have passed on it if you had enough sleep. A study showed that sleep deprivation led to significant increases not only in food cravings, but hunger, portion sizes, and chocolate and fat intakes as well[1]

Adequate Sleep May Have Benefits For Your Metabolism 

A lack of sleep may cause a decrease in your metabolism by negatively affecting your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) which can be avoided with adequate sleep. Your RMR is the number of calories your body burns at rest, that’s right, even if you stay in bed all day and don’t move you’re still burning calories. This number of calories is determined by a bunch of different factors including: 

  • age
  • weight
  • height
  • sex
  • muscle mass
  • & sleep[2,3]  

Sleep Can Help Regulate Your Appetite 

It’s no surprise that getting enough sleep can prevent you from overeating throughout the day, but why does this happen? This increase in food intake is likely due to the impact sleep has on the hunger hormones ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin is a hormone that promotes hunger, while leptin contributes to feeling full. When you do not get adequate sleep, the body makes more ghrelin and less leptin, leaving you hungry and increasing your appetite! 

If you needed a sign to prioritize your sleep to improve your physical, mental, and emotional health… look no further! Now is the time to catch up on those z’s you’ve been missing out on. 


  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30893841/ 
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5426207/
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27901037/

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