Thursday, December 09, 2004

Sleep Loss Triggers Weight Gain

Two new studies are proving that chronic sleep loss can trigger weight gain. The first study examined the impact of sleep loss on the hormones leptin and ghrelin. Leptin is produced by fat cells and signals satiety while ghrelin, which is produced in the stomach, is responsible for triggering hunger. During the 15-year study period, researchers found a 15 percent increase in ghrelin and a 16 percent decrease in leptin in people who consistently got only five hours of sleep.

Meanwhile, a separate study measured sleep loss’ impact on cravings and found that as the study's subjects became more sleep-deprived, their food choices changed. High calorie, high-carb foods became the most appealing after two nights of little sleep.


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