They show that sleep makes you slim (without changing your diet)

Sleeping an extra 1.2 hours over three years means losing 12 kg without changing your diet or increasing exercise.

The basis of the study carried out at the University of Chicago is that when we sleep little, we eat more. Dr. Esra Tasali, from the University of Chicago Sleep Center, designed a study to see if, on the contrary, improving the quality and duration of sleep makes us consume fewer calories and, consequently, lose weight.

The truth is that the results of the study are shocking. Some participants consumed 500 fewer calories per day after improving sleep. Just two weeks after starting the test and changing sleep patterns, the volunteers started to lose weight.

The volunteers were 80 adults aged 21 to 40 with a body mass index between 25 and 29.9, meaning they were overweight.

The study did not ask volunteers to restrict their diets or change their exercise routines. All slept in their own beds and used handheld devices to track sleep duration.

People who normally slept less than 6.5 hours a night shed an average of 270 calories from their daily intake when they got an extra 1.2 hours of sleep.

Sustained for three years, calorie reduction can lead people to lose about 12 kg without changing their diet during the day, scientists believe. Some study participants ate 500 fewer calories a day after getting better sleep.

The study was not designed to look at weight loss, but the researchers did notice the reduction in calories within two weeks after patients changed their sleep patterns.

“Many people are working hard to find ways to lower their caloric intake to lose weight; well, just by getting more sleep, you can reduce it substantially. ”

“If healthy sleep habits are maintained longer, this can lead to clinically important weight loss over time,” said Dr. Esra Tasali of the University of Chicago Sleep Center. “Many people are working hard to find ways to lower their caloric intake to lose weight; well, just by getting more sleep, you can reduce it substantially.”

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Previous studies demonstrated that getting too little sleep can make people gain weight by increasing their food intake. The latest study, published in Jama Internal Medicine, suggests the effects can be reversed by helping people get more sleep.

“Most of the other studies on this topic in laboratories are of short duration, a few days, and food intake is measured by the amount that participants consume from an offered diet,” Tasali said. “In our study, we just manipulated sleep and made participants eat whatever they wanted, without any food records or anything else to track their nutrition for themselves.”

One session was enough for them to sleep better.

Half of the participants were randomly assigned to receive personalized sleep hygiene advice.

One of the most surprising findings from the study is that a single sleep counseling session can change people’s sleeping habits enough to improve the amount of sleep they get. “We simply coached each individual on good sleep hygiene and discussed their own personal sleep environments, providing personalized advice on changes they could make to improve sleep duration,” Tasali said.

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