For effective weight loss and maintenance, make sure you… get enough sleep!   Yaay – one of my top 10 favorite things!  Lack of sleep can negatively affect your weight in 3 ways: 
1.       The Hormonal Effect:  Leptin is a hormone that reduces hunger.  A recent study found that when participants slept only four hours a night they had lower levels of leptin than when they slept a full 10 hours.  Further, the lack of sleep also caused the hormone that stimulates appetite to increase. (Double whammy.)
2.       The Poor Food Choice Effect:  People who are sleep deprived often consume higher amounts of high carbohydrate foods, (soft drinks, sweets etc), to get a needed energy boost.  These high energy dense items can increase the daily caloric intake.
3.       The Tired Leads to Lazy Effect:  When exhausted, getting a good workout done is not super appealing.  Exercise is often skipped, or if done, the intensity and/or duration may be reduced.
So to help your weight loss/maintenance, get off the web, get in bed, and get enough sleep.
BTW: How much is enough?  The amount of sleep a person varies with many factors – including age.  A general guideline for adults is 7-9 hours per day.
Sources: The National Institutes of Health, webmd.com, mayoclinic.com

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