We’ve heard studies that tell you that a lack of sleep can lead to belly fat, but a study out of Ohio State University showed that when mice were exposed to even dim light (from a TV, or even a bright digital clock) during their sleep cycle gained more weight than mice who slept in the dark (Clean Eating, Feb. 2011).
The National Sleep Foundation recommends 7-9 hours for adults. I have found that as I age, the amount of sleep that my body wants is reduced.
You may need to consider that you have sleep apnea. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/sleepapnea.html . This condition is often unknown to the person who has it. Sleep apnea happens when you have a break in your breathing patterns for 20-30 seconds. The oxygen in your blood drops due to this break. It can leave you drowsy the next day and can lead to other health issues. A battery of tests must be run, but there are some solutions for this condition.
For more typical sleep problems try creating a peaceful environment in our “sleep zone” is important to create success in sleeping. Computer screens, or cell phones, or things that have a bright glow light cause your brain to stay active, and does not encourage relaxation. Keep the temperature of the room comfortable, and try to disconnect from stress before bedtime. Try meditation, deep breathing, or reading a book.
A glass of low-fat milk (tryptophan- same as in turkey) may help with sleeping before lights out. Many workout magazines promote having a protein shake before bed to give your body fuel for muscle growth to use while you are sleeping. If weight loss is your goal, versus muscle growth, protein shakes may put you over your daily calorie intake.
I use a noise machine that creates ambient noise when I travel. Many people pack their pillow cases or even their own pillows to create a home, away from home.
Your life can get so busy, it seems easy to get things done by cutting into your sleep time, but protect that time for continued good health.
Friday 04/13/12- Workout Diary:
Yoga DVD- 90 min
Friday 04/13/12- Food Diary:
Organic steel cut oats (150 cal.)
1/8 cup blackberries, blueberries (30 cal)
protein shake with 1/2 cup pasturized egg whites (190 cal)
1 cup cooked quinoa, mixed with frozen peas, 1 /4 tbls. curry (183 cal) (leftover)
1 apple (57 cal)
3.5 oz salmon (180 cal)
8 oz.Salad- spinach, 1/2 sweet pepper, yellow squash, , 1 tbls roasted sunflower seeds(90 cal)
3 oz adamame (130 cal)
apple (57 cal)
2 large crab legs, lemon ( no butter) (260 cal)
1/2 acorn squash, spritz with I Can't Believe It's Not Butter, nutmeg (65 cal)
1 cup wilted spinach, garlic, shallots, EVOO (85 cal)
1/2 cup non-fat cottage cheese, 1/2 cup bluberrries, 1/4 cup strawberries(120 cal)