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BTD Forums  /  Live Right 4 Your Type  /  Sleep Deprivation and Weight Gain
Posted by: balletomane, Tuesday, September 6, 2011, 3:49am
Recently I have been extremely sleep deprived due to work. I pulled a couple of all-nighters and had been sleeping for about 3-4 hours on average. During this period I also didn't exercise as usual.

Now that I am taking a break from this busy period, I realized how much weight I have put on and fat has accumulated around my waist.

I read how the body is affected by the lack of sleep in the following article and find that to be true:
http://www.ditch-diets-live-light.com/sleep-and-obesity.html

I find that when I stay up late, I get hungry and would snack a lot, then I gain weight. The hunger signal may not be true hunger but then I can't ignore it and just go to bed  :-/

This morning I woke up seeing my weight gone up a lot after the late night snack. I had slept about 6 hours when I weighed myself then. I went back to bed and slept for another 2.5 hours. When I weighted myself again I had gone down by 1 lb. This is really interesting. It has happened to me before and I think I've proved that the less you sleep the more easily you gain weight.
Posted by: Possum, Tuesday, September 6, 2011, 3:56am; Reply: 1
Hope your work schedule gets back in balance soon??!!
I have noticed this too...Could there be anything like the effect of being a little more dehydrated by sleeping longer as well?
Posted by: balletomane, Tuesday, September 6, 2011, 5:42am; Reply: 2
Just woke up from a half-hour nap and lost another half a pound  ;D

I tend to agree with your theory.... some of that weight might have been water retention. I was also thinking maybe sleeping longer allows the body enough time to metabolize and detox.

I do have to do something with my work schedule. My shift doesn't end till 2am but I'll try to sneak in some sleep if nobody gives me any more task past mid-night!!!
Posted by: Marc121, Thursday, September 8, 2011, 2:14pm; Reply: 3
I remember my life like that last year. Because of studying. The body`s more important.
Posted by: balletomane, Thursday, September 8, 2011, 3:38pm; Reply: 4
Yes of course. Health is so important. But you are young and perhaps don't need to worry about working to put food--compliant ones, no less  ;D--on your plate.

If I had a choice I would love to live off my own land and be a farmer/animal raiser, as much hard work as it seems--it's more natural after all. Better still, be a true Hunter, LOL! Then there isn't even a chance I'd have to worry about gaining weight, LOL! Much better than working this graveyard shift ;D
Posted by: 15854 (Guest), Thursday, September 8, 2011, 7:40pm; Reply: 5
I'm a night owl who works a day job.

If I don't get enough sleep, the pounds really pile on. I don't have any trouble falling asleep, it's going to bed in the first place that trips me up. I end up only getting 5-6 hours sleep and then am groggy all day.

Wonder if establishing a "before bed" routine would help?
Posted by: Marc121, Sunday, September 11, 2011, 11:26am; Reply: 6
Be carefull what you wish for cause you might get it all :) :).
Posted by: ruthiegirl, Sunday, September 11, 2011, 5:21pm; Reply: 7
Calire- I'd be lost without my "before bed" routine. In fact, there are days when I get to bed late because something gets stressful at bedtime (such as an overtired 9yo throwing a tanrum) and then I need another hour or two to unwind before I'm capable of sleep, even if I was tired several hours ago.

I've also found that getting adequate sleep is an absoutely essential component of a weight loss routine, and is an important part of overall health. There have been times when sleep competes with exercise: I wake up early, still tired, and I have to decide if getting up to go for a walk will help me more than rolling over and getting another hour or two of sleep. It's a delicate balancing act. Since I walked 4 miles yesterday, I opted for sleep this morning. If I hadn't exercised in days (and part of my tiredness was due to "lack of exercise" insimnia,) I'd get up and push myself to take a walk.
Posted by: Mark, Sunday, September 11, 2011, 5:59pm; Reply: 8
Try taking Valerian right before bed when you do sleep. It's really amazing for O's. Dr. D recommends it.

Melatonin is another good one, but has some controversy surrounding it.
Posted by: 14442 (Guest), Sunday, September 11, 2011, 6:34pm; Reply: 9
Quoted from Mark
Try taking Valerian right before bed when you do sleep. It's really amazing for O's. Dr. D recommends it.

Melatonin is another good one, but has some controversy surrounding it.


I'm thinking of taking Valerian, need to go pick it up.  It has helped me in the past.

Balletomane I hear you on the sleep loss.  I am perimenopausal and have my nights.  I've found fasting to be the best solution at mid life; ie little or no food during the day.

Posted by: marjorie, Monday, September 12, 2011, 5:08am; Reply: 10
I typically lose weight or at least maintain when I get my sleep. I have mentioned before, I need at least 8 hours to feel normal, and somedays, I can sleep 9 or 10 and look so refreshed.

I have learned the hard way, but now I can make sleep a priority regardless of what is not done for the day. There is always tomorrow.
Posted by: balletomane, Monday, September 12, 2011, 8:34am; Reply: 11
Sahara, I am perimenopausal as well. Some days I wake up in the middle of the night, sweating and needing to go to the toilet (is there a simpler way to say it in English? In Swedish there is one simple word for it, "kissn√∂jdig"  ;D). I have checked with a lab who tests hormones to see if the sweating qualifies for "hot flashes" but the answer was no. I would have to be drenched in sweat all over to be considered to have this condition. Well, I guess it's just the hot weather. Anyway, it doesn't help that the sky is gets so bright and the air so warm early in the morning, before I have enough sleep.

Anyway, I did make some progress last week by taking Vitamin B12 (NAP's Methyl 12) right before bed. It really helped me fall asleep quickly and sleep through the night. As a result, I was able to get 7-8 hours of sleep most nights. This really made a big difference in how I feel. The depression has lifted and I am starting to lose the extra weight that I gained.

I have never tried Valerian or Melantonin. But since Vitamin B12 works so well for me, I'm going to keep on taking it for a while as long as I have to work late.

Marjorie, you inspire me again. I should really try to make sleep a priority. It is hard with so many obligations and stuff one needs to accomplish every day. But you're right, one has to make sleep a priority. I am learning it the hard way myself, having lost balance and feeling the pain it caused.
Posted by: balletomane, Monday, September 12, 2011, 1:54pm; Reply: 12
A new study shows night owls are more likely to have nightmares and tendency for mental disorders  :-/:

http://bodyodd.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/09/02/7575206-night-owls-have-more-nightmares-study-claims
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Monday, September 12, 2011, 2:27pm; Reply: 13
I have definitely found that, if I don't get enough sleep, I do NOT lose weight, period.  PERIOD.  It is all to do with hormones.  When we don't sleep, our bodies produce more of the stress hormones like cortisol.  This makes your body hold on to fat (because it believes something very stressful is going on and, therefore, that could mean it needs to hold onto every valuable calorie and speck of energy it has, such as stored fat).  Cortisol also makes you crave, though mercifully, since my diet is so optimal now for maintaining my personal biochemical balance, I have not had ONE craving since starting the GTD in 2008, but I do notice a slight increase in appetite and in the desire to eat more grains that I should in one day, for instance, if I am really sleep deprived.  However, it is not to the level of a craving, which to me, in my unfortunately vast and lengthy experience with it, is something very powerful that I am almost commanded, biochemically, to give in to.  It is just something that I am aware of, and I tell myself, aaaah, this is from not sleeping, so don't do what the screwed up signal is asking of you, don't eat more carbs, and DO eat more SUPERFOODS, especially protein, and GET TO BED ON TIME TONIGHT.  This is yet another powerful wonder of the BTD and GTD way of life:  you learn what the messages your body sends you really mean, how they should really be interpreted and acted upon.  Anyway, so, there you are, holding onto your fat and craving carbs (the craving is your body attempting to balance its brain chemistry and blood sugar).  By contrast, when we DO get enough sleep, we not only don't produce as much cortisol and other stress hormones, but we DO produce soothing hormones that signal the body that it is okay to release fat, and that everything is in balance, so no need to crave simple carbs to try to jack up your blood sugar.

I have found that this is all a consistently reproducible result, so for me, I really must get enough sleep, which just so happens to be a very challenging thing for me, and I usually do go around somewhat sleep deprived, but I try very hard to keep it to a minimum.  I even do try to nap on weekends now, with mixed results (us O's are not good nappers *lol*, that is more an A forte).

Anyway:  sleep, good.  Lack of sleep, bad.
Posted by: balletomane, Monday, September 12, 2011, 3:52pm; Reply: 14
Peppermint Twist, wow, thank you for the explanation. It puts everything into perspective. Yes, I do notice I get more cravings when I don't have enough sleep any given day. By contrast, when I have slept enough and well, I wake up feeling "satisfied" instead of hungry. How interesting is that!
Posted by: Patty H, Monday, September 12, 2011, 4:11pm; Reply: 15
balletomane, any resistance to non-compliant food I have goes out the window when I am tired.  Sleep is very important to me, and I do my best to get as much sleep as possible.  Last night I was awake until 2:30 AM, which is extremely unsual for me, but I had a lot on my mind.  I finally took a couple of melatonin and slept for 7 hours, but I feel lethargic today.  I plan to go for a run, which should give me a boost of energy.  I find that exercising when I am tired helps to get me back in gear and helps me to sleep better the next night.  Maybe you can come home after the graveyard shift, go to sleep and wake up a little earlier to try and fit in your daily exercise?  Even 30 minutes of your favorite strenuous exercise might help.  ;)
Posted by: balletomane, Monday, September 12, 2011, 4:38pm; Reply: 16
Thanks for your suggestion, Patty! Luckily, my graveyard shift is performed at home, LOL! Yea, that's the positive side of the coin. But to do exercise early in the morning is really hard. However, I am considering doing a sort of warm-up ballet at the portable barre I have set up at home in the morning, instead of in the late afternoon as I have been doing lately. Perhaps that will help me kick-start the day  :)
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Monday, September 12, 2011, 4:50pm; Reply: 17
Quoted from balletomane
Peppermint Twist, wow, thank you for the explanation. It puts everything into perspective. Yes, I do notice I get more cravings when I don't have enough sleep any given day. By contrast, when I have slept enough and well, I wake up feeling "satisfied" instead of hungry. How interesting is that!

Hormones.  They are powerful little suckas.  They must be respected and worked with at all times, because, once they get out of balance, you have problems.  To me, in the end, my GTD is all about biochemical balance--hormones, basically!  You know that saying, "If momma isn't happy, nobody's happy!"?  Well, it applies to hormones, too:  if they aren't happy, nobody's happy.

;D

Posted by: balletomane, Tuesday, September 13, 2011, 2:24am; Reply: 18
;D So true! So true! ;D
Posted by: Possum, Tuesday, September 13, 2011, 2:37am; Reply: 19
Brilliant post PT!! Thanks.. I am gonna show this to Mr P who repeatedly wakes me up at anywhere from 4am onward...Grrr... & I saw your tip on B12 Ballet... I will feed him some lol  ;)
Posted by: Patty H, Tuesday, September 13, 2011, 3:33am; Reply: 20
Quoted from Peppermint Twist

Hormones.  They are powerful little suckas.  They must be respected and worked with at all times, because, once they get out of balance, you have problems.  To me, in the end, my GTD is all about biochemical balance--hormones, basically!  You know that saying, "If momma isn't happy, nobody's happy!"?  Well, it applies to hormones, too:  if they aren't happy, nobody's happy.

;D



I agree.  Don't they say that one should let a sleeping lion, sleep?  :o  Maybe that reference was originally intended for hormonal women!  ;D

You always crack me up, PT!   ;D
Posted by: Possum, Tuesday, September 13, 2011, 3:39am; Reply: 21
Quoted from Patty H


I agree.  Don't they say that one should let a sleeping lion, sleep?  :o  Maybe that reference was originally intended for hormonal women!  ;D   ;D
You definitely should let a sleeping possum, sleep...::) as my DH found out this morning :D  Especially as this one wasn't just "playing possum"... ;)

Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Tuesday, September 13, 2011, 6:55pm; Reply: 22
Quoted from Possum
Brilliant post PT!!

Thank you, Boar expert!*

*LOST reference, remember Sawyer saying that?  ;D

Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Tuesday, September 13, 2011, 6:57pm; Reply: 23
Quoted from Patty H
You always crack me up, PT!   ;D

If I can make someone laugh, I feel I'm not a useless waste of oxygen.  Therefore, YAY!

Posted by: Marc121, Tuesday, September 20, 2011, 4:21am; Reply: 24
I to found to drink less water after 7pm. Cause In the middle of the nigth my body wakes me up to release urine.
Posted by: balletomane, Tuesday, September 20, 2011, 4:28am; Reply: 25
Good point. Maybe I should drink less in the evening. Normally I have 3 cups of herbal tea in the evening, after dinner. I often wake up in the middle of my sleep because I have to go to the toilet. Not fun.
Posted by: ruthiegirl, Wednesday, September 21, 2011, 8:52pm; Reply: 26
Quoted from Peppermint Twist

If I can make someone laugh, I feel I'm not a useless waste of oxygen.  Therefore, YAY!



Oh, come on PT. We all know you're a very useful waste of oxygen!  :P
Posted by: Possum, Thursday, September 22, 2011, 9:57pm; Reply: 27
Quoted from balletomane
Good point. Maybe I should drink less in the evening. Normally I have 3 cups of herbal tea in the evening, after dinner. I often wake up in the middle of my sleep because I have to go to the toilet. Not fun.
Better than not waking up to pee :D ;D

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