Get a Good Night’s Sleep or Get Fat
How many hours of sleep do you get on an average night? Are you a strict, in-bed-by-10 dude or a stay up all night and only go to bed when I finish watching five episodes of “Archer” kind of guy? If you’re the type that stays up late and doesn’t get a good eight hours of sleep, there’s a good chance you’ll start packing on the pounds.
A new study published in the Annals of Internal medicine has revealed that lack of sleep increases the risk for developing diabetes and obesity. A team of researchers at the University of Chicago Clinical Resource Center took seven healthy adults (1 woman and 6 guys) and had each sleep for a certain amount of hours for several nights. Each was allowed to sleep only 4.5 hours for four nights in a row.
What does four nights of barely any sleep do? The research team found that too many late nights In a row affects how our bodies respond to insulin. After four nights of insufficient sleep, the participants’ fat cells became 30 percent less sensitive to insulin, which helps regulate metabolism.
According to the researchers, this insulin-resistant state is comparative to the cells of a healthy person changing into those of a diabetic or obese person. Lack of sleep puts our bodies in an insulin-resistant state, which keeps our metabolism from working properly. Translation: if you’re not getting enough sleep, you’re more likely to be overweight.
If you’re the type of guy that gets eight hours of sleep regularly, keep up the good work. If you’re repeatedly getting less than five hours of sleep a night, make a change or else.
Sleep is a lot more important than you think. It’s your body’s way of recharging and repairing itself. You can work out all you want and eat nothing but the healthiest foods available. It won’t mean jack squat if you’re staying up until 4 a.m. every night playing “Call of Duty.” If you’re serious about staying in good shape, you need to take sleep as seriously as you would hitting the gym or maintaining a healthy diet.
Do you go to the gym every other day at 5 p.m.? Do you make sure to eat a certain amount of protein per day? Sleep should be treated in exactly the same way. Force yourself to go to bed at a reasonable hour. Lay off the soda and junk food in the evening. Just make sure you’re in bed before 3 a.m. and get eight hours of sleep. Once you start doing it regularly, you’ll get on a normal sleep cycle and you won’t even have to think about it.
Like exercise and a healthy diet, sleep is a metabolism miracle worker. It’s like a personal trainer for your body, keeping it chugging along, even when you’re dreaming about supermodels and hanging out with P. Diddy on some luxury yacht. Get a good night’s sleep tonight. If you’re reading this at 4 a.m., go to bed immediately.
About John Brhel John Brhel is a freelance writer from upstate New York that enjoys picking apart life's idiosyncrasies and listening to Huey Lewis & the News.