Recent research has figured out the method of decreasing calories absorption in the body without having a strict diet and exercise schedule. It’s as simple as lying in bed for more time. The experiment was done with 80 adults that are overweight, those adults have their sleep lesser than 6.5 hours at night. When 1.2 hours are added to their sleeping schedule, it has been observed that on average, intake or absorption of 270 calories a day by the body is reduced.
In two weeks of the experiment, calorie absorption by consuming food and drinks decreased to be less than the number of calories burned by the adults. This will lead to weight loss over a longer duration. This research has the opposite approach to much other research done in the past that told us that getting less or insufficient sleep leads to weight gain. Esra Tasali, Director of the University of Chicago Sleep Center said, “In past years we showed that sleep restrictions affect appetite regulation that leads to increase the food intake and in result put a risk of gaining more weight over time.”
“The question that rises everywhere is if such things happen with sleep loss, we can extend sleep and might reverse some of the adverse results”, she added.
The researcher said that if such calorie intake is maintained for three years then an individual can lose around 12 kilograms. This study was done in the real world and so it is very promising. The participants in this research used wearables to keep track of their sleep and then spent their day as usual by eating and having some exercise. The urine test is done to keep track of participants’ calorie intake as this is the best method for measuring daily energy expenditure outside and other than the lab.
It involves drinking water in which the hydrogen and oxygen atoms are replaced with natural isotopes that are easy to track. By comparing the labeled consumed water with the non-labeled water from broken down glucose, it is made possible to calculate calorie absorption by the body outside the lab. The most important was the advice session led by the research team, due to which in no time the participants adjusted their sleep duration, and sleep time was increased.
Tasali said that they simply advised every participant on good sleep hygiene and discussed their personal sleep environments, providing them information and ways to change and increase their sleep duration.
The researcher said that restricting the usage of electronic devices before sleep time was one of the key methods that improve sleep behavior in the study. Participants are not aware of the fact that they were taking part in a sleep intervention study.
It is not made clear by this study why it is happening, although it is noted that it is just opposite to previous studies. Obviously having a good diet and exercise schedule is what doctors are going to prefer over an extra hour in bed. But it can’t be denied that proper sleep patterns can play a key role in broader weight loss programs for those with obesity.