Thoughts on Better Aging

Struggling with Weight Gain? Check Your Sleep Habits

August 19th, 2017

Learn about the links between sleep loss and weight gain

Have you found yourself struggling with weight gain as you age? The root of the problem is changes in your metabolism. Age-related hormone decline is an important contributor to metabolic changes, but it may not be the only thing going on in your case. Poor sleep—which is a common issue for aging men and women—can also have a dramatic impact on your metabolism and your waistline.

Poor Sleep Affects How You Eat

Recent research from Uppsala University in Sweden has helped to shed more light on how sleep loss affects energy metabolism. The study revealed that acute sleep deprivation caused individuals with normal metabolisms to:

  • Prefer larger food portions
  • Seek more calories
  • Be more impulsive in food choices
  • Experience more pleasure from eating
  • Expend less energy

Researchers attributed these behavioral changes to several key physiological changes that occur after sleep loss:

Changes in Leptin/Ghrelin Balance: Leptin, a hormone that promotes feelings of fullness, decreases with lack of sleep, while ghrelin, an appetite hormone, increases. This means that you wake up hungry due to high ghrelin levels ,and you eat more because you don’t have enough leptin to feel full.

Increased Levels of Endocannabinoids: Sleep deprivation and smoking marijuana cause similar food cravings. The endocannabinoids that are activated when you don’t sleep bind to the same receptors in the brain as marijuana.

Altered Gut Bacteria: The gut is commonly called a “second brain” because it has the power to communicate with the central nervous system. Lack of sleep can affect the population of bacteria in the gut, which can affect metabolism and even contribute to food cravings.

Reduced Insulin Sensitivity: Poor sleep can reduce sensitivity to insulin, making cells less able to utilize the food you to take in. You’ll crave more carbs and your body will store fat more easily.

Get Better Sleep—and a Trimmer Waistline—with Renew Youth

At Renew Youth, we provide treatment choices that can help men and women conquer many of the sleep challenges that come with aging. For example, hormone replacement therapy can be used to treat insomnia as well as other issues that can affect sleep quality, such as night sweats, anxiety, and sleep apnea. We also offer serotonin and melatonin treatments to help reset your biological clock so you can fall asleep more easily at night.

Once you start sleeping better, chances are you’ll begin to see better results from diet and exercise. We can help support this process with various other treatments designed to promote a healthy metabolism.

To learn more, please call us at 800-859-7511 or submit an online contact form.

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