Poor Sleep Weight Gain

Most of us know that getting a good night’s sleep is important for many reasons, however one reason many people aren’t aware of is weight gain.

Studies have shown that people who don’t get enough quality sleep tend to gain more weight than those who do make quality sleep a priority. 1

Additionally a 16-year study of over 60,000 women concluded that those who slept less than 5 hours per night were significantly more likely to gain weight than those who slept 7 hours or more per night. 2

The National Sleep Foundation recommends the below hours of sleep for an adult, however stress that individual factors can sway the number. For example someone who has a very busy work schedule, or someone experiencing high stress may need more time of quality sleep.

• Younger adults (18-25): Sleep range is 7-9 hours
• Adults (26-64): Sleep range did not change and remains 7-9 hours
• Older adults (65+): Sleep range is 7-8 hours 3

There are many factors which can interrupt quality sleep. Stimulants like coffee and energy drinks, alarm clocks, lights and electronic devices can interfere with our natural sleep/wake cycle.

Another factor which can impair quality sleep is snoring and sleep apnoea. Sleep apnoea and snoring are extremely common conditions and it’s a major disruption to most families and a significant cause of ill health to people who suffer from it.

Sleep Apnoea and weight gain

Dr Garry Cussell explains both snoring and sleep apnoea occur because the air intake through our mouth down into our lungs is reduced by a narrowed airway. As a consequence of the narrowing of the airway and reduction of oxygen to our brain, our brain sends a signal asking us to force a deeper breath to get more air in, as we breathe harder through the narrowed airway the snoring sound is caused by the vibration of the soft tissues at the back of the pallet. Because this skin is loose it makes that guttural or ‘snoring’ sound.


1, 2 https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/20-tips-to-lose-belly-fat
3 https://sleepfoundation.org/excessivesleepiness/content/how-much-sleep-do-we-really-need-0

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