Do you lose calories when you sleep? When your goal is to be fit and lose excess pounds, you pay attention to proper exercise and proper nutrition. But don’t forget about two neglected processes, such as rest and sleep.
A sufficient amount of sleep has a positive effect on achieving the goals in the health and appearance area. Many studies have confirmed that sleep is important, but how many? It isn’t easy to determine how much seep is ideal or appropriate for an individual who wants to stimulate fat as much as possible and optimize his health.
Opinions are very different on this question. We must also take into account that we don’t need the same number of hours for sleep.
A Study of Sleepers
One interesting study included 26 people and divided them into two groups. The first group slept one week for less than 6 hours a day (on average). The second group of individuals slept 10 hours a day on average for one week. After the end of the test, the group that slept for 6 hours showed interesting changes of the body composition.
The genes responsible for protein production and body restoration, and accelerating metabolic processes, temporarily stopped to perform these functions, or have been significantly slowed down.
Lack of sleep therefore also doesn’t affect well on the genes that are responsible for promoting metabolism and consequently fat loss (calorie burn). For the most part, you lose weight while you are asleep, especially when you perform a short intensive exercise that encourages EPOC or so-called after-burn effect.
Deactivation of genes that thrives on these processes means stopping or significantly reducing the loss of excess fat. At first glance everything is very simple. Sleep is an important factor in fat loss and optimizing health. So should we state that more sleep is better for you and your body? It’s not like that…
Do You Lose Calories When You Sleep?
More sleep doesn’t necessarily affect your body better. One of the most extensive studies in the years 1982-1988 included a population of 1.1 million people. The purpose of the study was to prevent cancer.
Years, nutrition, previous health problems and risk factors such as smoking and alcohol were observed factors in this study. Due to the huge number of population, almost two decades were needed to analyze all the collected data.
They compared the risk factors with a specific amount of sleep hours per night. The results were surprising. The study showed that people with seven hours of sleep each night had the best predisposition for a longer life.
An even more interesting finding was that those with eight hours or more sleep actually had poorer results than those with six hours of sleep. Those who slept for 10 hours or more had by far the worst result, even worse than those who slept less than five hours a night.
This study was focused on the percentage of mortality and not on the sleep observation for fat loss and calorie burn. But the fact is that there is a link between optimum health and maximum fat loss.
We can conclude that the group with the best result and the best predisposition for survival and longer life also achieved the best result in achieving optimal health and performance of the metabolic system compared to other groups.
Of course this doesn’t mean that you need to set your alarm clock to exactly seven hours of sleep in order to optimize your health and fat loss. However, it is true that this study somehow supports the thesis that sleep works on health in a similar way to exercise itself. As the quality of exercise is more important than quantity, the sleep quality is even more important than the length.
How can You Sleep better?
Do you lose calories when you sleep? Of course you do, sleeping will burn approx. 71 kcal per hour of sleep. Our body needs energy for its functioning, so this is nothing surprising. Because many people have sleeping issue due to different reasons, we decided to give some tips on how to sleep better and lose fat meanwhile.
Make sure you consume enough magnesium with proper nutrition. You probably didn’t know that 80% of people have a shortage of this mineral, which is one of the main causes of sleep problems.
A cup of warm, non-caffeine drink will help you to calm down and help you to fall asleep. Treat yourself with chamomile, mint or lavender tea (avoid caffeine).
If you consume less carbohydrate, try to eat more fat before sleeping. This way you will fall asleep faster and burn more calories. One spoon of coconut or other healthy oil will be sufficient.
You probably heard before that sleeping in the dark room is best. Turn off all lights and machines that illuminate light (TV, computer, clocks, etc.). Roll blinds for creating the perfect dark. The darker it is in the room in which you sleep; the better and deeper your sleep will be.
Neurotransmitter Gaba is an inhibitory nerve transmitter in the central nervous system that helps you calm down and helps to improve sleep. If you have trouble sleeping, try to include it in your nutrition. You can get it as a dietary supplement.