Habit #3 – Sleep: It’s been a while since our last instalment about how to get rid of those spring rolls and healthy habit #3 is all about sleep. Are you getting enough?
The average person sleeps approximately 6.5 hours per night. Compared to our grandparents two generations ago, that is about 1.5 hours less sleep than they used to get on a nightly basis. And….wait for it…that is about 500 hours LESS sleep over the course of a year which has a significant impact on your waistline!
Research tells us that if you sleep less than 7 hours per night, your satiety hormone, leptin, decreases and the opposite hunger-hormone, ghrelin, increases. If you sleep less than 6 hours, the impact is even more dramatic. Your lack of sleep leads to constant cravings throughout the day (sound familiar?), typically for simple sugars and processed carbs. This constant snacking increases blood sugars and insulin and leaves you stuck in the “building” rather than “burning” mode.
New habit: Go to bed an hour earlier! This is especially important during the winter months (January – March) when your body needs more recovery and rejuvenation during the shorter, darker, and colder days. So put your phone down, turn off the tv, and turn out the lights an hour earlier. An additional hour of sleep each night will help curb cravings and keep you sharper and focused throughout the day!