At night, approx­i­mate­ly 40–55 kilo­calo­ries are burned per hour. But how much sleep do you need to lose weight? Let’s fig­ure out how much sleep affects weight loss.

Don’t self-med­icate! In our arti­cles, we col­lect the lat­est sci­en­tif­ic evi­dence and opin­ions from respect­ed health experts. But remem­ber: only a doc­tor can make a diag­no­sis and pre­scribe treat­ment.

Amer­i­can sci­en­tists have found that an extra hour of sleep helps an over­weight per­son lose weight. The fact is that this way he con­sumes few­er calo­ries, experts are sure. The study results were pub­lished in the sci­en­tif­ic jour­nal JAMA Inter­nal Med­i­cine.

How many hours do you need to sleep to lose weight?

For the exper­i­ment, sci­en­tists select­ed 80 vol­un­teers suf­fer­ing from excess weight. The par­tic­i­pants’ body mass index ranged from 25 to 29 — the indi­ca­tor is cal­cu­lat­ed as weight in kilo­grams divid­ed by height in meters squared. A BMI between 18.5 and 25 is con­sid­ered nor­mal.

Before the exper­i­ment, the vol­un­teers slept less than 6.5 hours a day. After divid­ing into two groups, 40 peo­ple did not change their sched­ule, and the oth­er half slept from 7.5 to 8.5 hours every day. All para­me­ters were mea­sured using a wrist acti­graph.

At night, approx­i­mate­ly 40–55 kilo­calo­ries are burned per hour.

At the end of the exper­i­ment, sci­en­tists not­ed that the sec­ond group began to con­sume 270–500 few­er calo­ries per day. Experts have con­clud­ed that reduc­ing the amount of ener­gy con­sumed will help in los­ing weight. Lack of sleep can work against you: the amount of the hor­mone ghre­lin, which stim­u­lates appetite, increas­es in the body, but the lev­el of lep­tin, which sup­press­es the desire to snack, on the con­trary, decreas­es. That is, you can com­pen­sate for lack of sleep by overeat­ing and not sus­pect it.

This makes sense: even small lifestyle changes affect the con­di­tion of the body. For exam­ple, sci­en­tists from Edith Cow­an Uni­ver­si­ty found that just three sec­onds of exer­cise a day can strength­en mus­cles — the main thing is to choose the right load.

What else do scientists know about the effect of sleep on weight and weight loss?

Based on the research above, you may get the false impres­sion that just know­ing how much sleep to lose weight is enough to solve all your weight prob­lems.

This is wrong. More­over, lack of nor­mal sleep only increas­es the like­li­hood of becom­ing obese, but does not make it guar­an­teed. Unless you have a genet­ic ten­den­cy toward obe­si­ty, a lit­tle sleep depri­va­tion is unlike­ly to lead to seri­ous weight prob­lems.

The benefits of sleep for weight loss are obvious, but do not think that this is the main factor in weight loss.

But if there is a genet­ic ten­den­cy towards obe­si­ty, then lack of sleep will be anoth­er fac­tor influ­enc­ing your weight. And very sig­nif­i­cant.

Healthy sleep is not the pri­ma­ry fac­tor influ­enc­ing your fig­ure. Eat­ing habits, calo­rie deficit and mod­er­ate phys­i­cal activ­i­ty are much more impor­tant. There­fore, the answer to the ques­tion of how much sleep you need to lose weight will not guar­an­tee weight loss, but will only sim­pli­fy the task a lit­tle.

Why is lack of sleep harmful?

And here some may exhale: if it is not so impor­tant how many hours of sleep to lose weight, then you can con­tin­ue to deny your body 1–2 hours of sleep dai­ly. This is a fatal mis­take.

Lack of sleep has a dev­as­tat­ing impact on human health. And you def­i­nite­ly don’t want to face all the prob­lems it leads to. For exam­ple:

  • the like­li­hood of devel­op­ing can­cer great­ly increas­es;
  • the risk of devel­op­ing dia­betes increas­es;
  • risk of devel­op­ing depres­sive con­di­tions;

And this is only part of the prob­lems. It is enough to look at some of the stud­ies to be hor­ri­fied. Sleep plays one of the lead­ing roles in main­tain­ing good health for many years.

In our opin­ion, it is much more impor­tant to know how much sleep you need in order not to encounter seri­ous dis­eases, after which 5–10 extra kilo­grams will seem like flow­ers.

How much sleep do people of different ages need?

You always want to know what time to go to bed and how much sleep to lose weight, what foods to eat and what sports to do. Peo­ple want ready-made answers, but they don’t exist.

Sleep and excess weight are linked, although such a relationship is difficult to trace.

Every­one has dif­fer­ent bod­ies. For some, 6–7 hours of sleep will be enough to feel great at 15 years old, while oth­ers will sleep 4–5 hours and feel healthy at 45–55 years old.

And some­one will feel over­whelmed and weak if they sleep less than 10 hours dai­ly. And it is incor­rect to give any rec­om­men­da­tions in such cas­es. Organ­isms are indi­vid­ual and what is ben­e­fi­cial for one may be harm­ful for anoth­er.

And even though we don’t know what time you need to go to bed to lose weight, and how much sleep you need for good health, there are med­ical stan­dards. They sum­ma­rize the infor­ma­tion that is avail­able and give a gen­er­al idea of ​​the amount of sleep:

  • From infan­cy to 12 years, chil­dren sleep from 14 to 9 hours a day on aver­age (the fig­ure decreas­es with age);
  • By age 18, the aver­age sleep time is about 7.4 hours;
  • Peo­ple between 26 and 64 years old should sleep about 7–9 hours per night;
  • After 64 years, sleep time is reduced to 7–8 hours a day.

These num­bers are not just a wild guess, but are part of a larg­er sleep study. But despite the seri­ous­ness of the source, you should under­stand that your num­bers may dif­fer either up or down. And that’s absolute­ly nor­mal.

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