Day 17 – A Good NIght’s Sleep
The 6th essential ingredient to a healthy lifestyle is making sure that you have a deep and thorough sleep every night. Sleep is all too often overlooked when it comes to weight loss. Yet, its importance can’t be overstated. Have you ever noticed how much hungrier you are after a poor night’s sleep? And have you ever used food as a means to keep you awake during the day? Here’s why. When you don’t get enough sleep, you create an imbalance in the hormones that control your appetite. This imbalance is such that your appetite is much greater when you don’t get enough sleep. Lack of sleep causes you to eat more food!
Sleep is also an important key to maintaining the balance of many of your other hormones such as growth hormone and thyroid hormone. Both of these are key to helping you maintain a healthy weight. A healthy sleep increases production of both of these hormones.
This is all confirmed in a recent study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (September 2017), where researchers confirmed that eating later was associated with increased body fat! What was so interesting was that the research uncovered:
"that the timing of food intake relative to melatonin onset, a marker of a person's biological night, is associated with higher percent body fat and BMI."
Researchers found that individuals with high body fat percentages consumed most of their calories shortly before going to sleep when melatonin levels were high, compared to individuals with lower percentages of body fat.
Along with helping you lose weight, sleep is vital for your overall health. Your body performs most of its healing, restorative and detoxifying functions during deep sleep. While not everyone has the same need for sleep, in general, most healthy adults require 7 to 9 hours every night.
If you have trouble sleeping, there are many things you can do to improve this. One key is to eliminate any light in your room while sleeping and to avoid brightly lit screens such as TV and computer within a few hours of bedtime.
Do you struggle from "Monkey Mind" where you just can't burn off your brain. I can’t turn off my brain!” Night is often the time when your thoughts from the day come flooding in and you try to deal with it. But that thinking just causes what scientists call “autonomic arousal” which is another word for anxiety.
Here's a few tricks to help you deal with this:
First identify a time, a few hours before bed to journal and write down these issues in black and white, with a few simple solutions to the issues at hand can be a great way to reduce stress and have a plan to attack it the next day.
Second, try distraction such as counting backwards. Most people if they are going to bed at a consistent time (and waking up at a consistent time) will fall asleep quickly, if they can turn off their brain. So by using distraction you can get to that quiet place in their brain where sleep flows naturally.
Finally, try yoga or meditation to help lower your heart rate and relax your body.
If these tips don't work for you, consider a Melatonin supplement such as USANA's Pure Rest.
- If you have trouble sleeping, follow the advice above.
- If the above suggestions aren't enough to get you a good night's sleep, talk to your USANA representative about Pure Rest.
- Keep taking your supplements and probiotics.
- Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water every day.
- Check in with your USANA associate and let them know how it is going.