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Thursday, 31 March 2011

You Need Help Sleeping If You Want To Lose Weight

Recent research has discovered that you can double your likelihood of achieving your goal weight if you get between six and eight hours sleep each night.

If you sleep more, it will make you too inactive and if you sleep any less your stress levels will increase and at the same time you will crave unhealthy food.
The study in Portland, USA, by Kaiser Permanente, a health care consortium, revealed that people trying to lose 10lb or more were more likely to reach their target if they had lower stress levels and slept moderately.

472 overweight adult participants with an average age of 55 took part in the study.  They attended 22 behavioral counselling sessions, reduced their diet by 500 calories a day and increased the physical exercise they took to a minimum of 180 minutes per week.  They also had to keep a daily note of their habits, including their sleep patterns and stress levels.

Six months later, 60% of the people had lost at least 10lb.  Researchers found that the dieters who were successful were more likely to document that they had slept between 6 and 8 hours every night.  Almost three quarters of the participants who had both low stress levels and 6 to 8 hours sleep a night were likely to achieve the 10lb weight-loss target.  They were also twice as likely to be successful as those who reported the highest stress levels and 6 or less hours sleep each night.

"This study suggests that when people are trying to lose weight, they should try to get the right amount of sleep and reduce their stress," said chief author, Dr Charles Elder.  "Some people may just need to cut back on their schedules and get to bed earlier. Others may find that exercise can reduce stress and help them sleep.  For some people, mind-body techniques such as meditation also might be helpful."

The study was published in the International Journal of Obesity on March 29th 2011.

Conclusion:  You must get help sleeping if you want or need to lose weight.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

How Your Sleep Apnea Disorder Can Trash Your Diet!

According to the London Sleep Centre, about 6 percent to 8 percent of males over age 50 suffer from sleep apnea, while about 4 percent of females over 50 are afflicted.

The American Sleep Apnea Association defines obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) as a disorder that results in the soft tissues in the back of the throat temporarily collapsing and causing frequent interruptions in breathing.  When the airway is obstructed, the brain briefly arouses you in order to signal you to resume breathing, therefore resulting in disrupted or poor sleep patterns.

A new Harvard study reveals that OSA patients eat a less healthy diet than people without the disorder.  Test results showed that participants with OSA consumed 9 extra grams of saturated fat and 88 extra milligrams of cholesterol each day.

Researchers believe this may result in the increased risk of cardiovascular disease in OSA patients.  Raised blood pressure levels have also been reported in OSA patients. 

Severe OSA obviously should not be ignored.  By treating the symptoms early you can avoid other related health problems such as memory lapses, weight gain, sexual dysfunction and headaches.