When your body feels good, you make better choices about the food you eat and drink. Few things make your body feel better than S.EX. That statement holds true for sex itself and for the acronym that S.EX. stands for: Sleep and EXercise.
The exercise-health connection is kind of obvious. Exercise burns calories, builds and tones muscle, and keeps our heart, lungs, brain, skin, and every other part of us in good working order. Getting our blood pumping just a few times per week works wonders for our health. Agreed? Agreed. On to sleep.
When you sleep seven to eight hours at night, your body has the time and rest it needs to mentally process your day, repair cellular damage (that’s body cells not smart phones), hunt down and remove toxins, and wake up with energy for a new day. When you’re deprived of sleep—even short a few hours a night—your body can only partially recoup. You’re left feeling run down because you are run down and we tend to try to fix ourselves with sweets, junk food, or caffeine for an energy boost.
Sleep does so much more for your body than making you feel awake. “Sleep is the key to being rewarded for your diet and fitness efforts”(Shape.com). We start with sleep because sleep is going to make all of our other healthy decisions easier to make and more effective. What is the key to weight loss? Eat less and move more, right?
Eating: Studies have shown that sleeping less than 7 hours per night makes you crave high calorie foods, buy more food, and take larger portions than a rested person. Lack of sleep increases cortisol, the stress-related hormone, that ends up making you feel hungry all the time, even when your stomach is full. Fatigue affects your brain, activating the pleasure seeking cerebral section (Donut, anyone?) and slowing down the good decision making (inhibition) center (Fabulous idea! Let’s have two!).
Moving: Regular sleep helps you burn more calories even when you’re not moving. Sleep is when your body builds and repairs muscle, making any exercise you do more effective. Sleep helps your body regulate hormones like insulin and gives them time to do their job. The result is that sleepers burn more fat than non sleepers, even if their calorie intake is the same.
Sleep to lose weight? That seems too easy. Many of us think weight loss has to involve hours of sweaty torture at a gym, but the secret turns out to be snuggling under the covers in blissful repose. Now that is my kind of weight loss plan!
When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. Proverbs 3:24 (NIV)
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 1 Peter 5:10 (NIV)
http://www.womenshealthmag.com/weight-loss/sleep-weight-loss Six Ways Sleep Can Help You Lose Weight
*http://www.shape.com/lifestyle/mind-and-body/why-sleep-no-1-most-important-thing-better-body Why Sleep is the No. 1 Most Important Thing For a Better Body
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