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The less you sleep, the more you eat

Andres Rodriguez - Fotolia

Eat, sleep and repeat

If you’re trying to lose weight, do what you can to get a better night’s sleep. Research has found that a bad night's sleep - something that affects millions of people worldwide – can make one eat more.

"It is well recognised that food intake is implicated in many chronic health issues including obesity, diabetes and heart disease, and diet is often a target of treatment to prevent the onset of these conditions," commented the researchers Alyssa Lundahl and Timothy D Nelson of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, USA. However, they continued: "Understanding the mechanisms linking disrupted sleep patterns to increased food intake is important for informing both prevention and treatment interventions for chronic health conditions."

The effects of a bad night’s sleep

After a bad night's sleep, the hormone controlling the appetite is affected and emotional stress is greater. In addition, more food is desired to compensate for lack of energy and impulsivity is increased. All these affect the amount of food that you would consume in a day.

"Health psychologists should be mindful of the link between sleep and eating,” said the researchers. “Sleep should be actively considered in efforts to modify dietary behaviour.”

Recommended reading: Boost metabolism with this nighttime habit

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