Sleep Longer, Weigh Less?

You eat right, you exercise regularly, you drink a ton of water. But there’s one more thing you could be doing to support your weight loss goals.

SLEEP.

Are you getting enough?   If not, you may be susceptible to unsightly under-eye circles and occasional crabby moods. But there’s more bad news for those who don’t spend enough time in bed – lack of sleep may actually interfere with your weight loss efforts.

Research suggests that sleep deprivation may trigger the release of hormones that increase appetite and slow down metabolism. Sleepiness can also contribute to poor decision making when it comes to choosing foods.

It’s important to be realistic, though — if you already get at least 7.5 hours of sleep, staying in bed a little longer likely won’t lead to a loss on the scale. But for those who get less, catching up on sleep could contribute to weight loss success.

Break those bad bedtime habits with these helpful tips for a restful night’s sleep:

  • Establish a routine. It’s important to stick to the same bedtime routine every night. Start winding down at least an hour before you plan to sleep – this includes turning off the TV and computer, as well as dimming the lights.
  • Drink a bedtime brew. To get yourself in the mood for slumber, sip a soothing cup of chamomile tea or a specialized bedtime blend with passionflower, lavender and more.
  • Consider a supplement. There are a variety of products that may support a healthy sleep-wake cycle, including melatonin, GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) or valerian root extract.
  • Find your comfort zone. Is a hard mattress or lumpy pillow keeping you up at night? Or is the temperature in your bedroom not quite right? Take time to make the proper adjustments, so you’ll be able to sleep peacefully.
  • Block out light and sound. Try a sleep mask and a set of ear plugs to drown out distractions and help you drift off into a deep sleep. (Or grab them both with this convenient Bucky sleep set.)

Sweet dreams!

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