More sleep, less stress helps with weight loss

March 29, 2011 in Nutrition Topics in the News, Weight Management

More sleep, less stress helps with weight loss
According to new study findings from researchers in the U.S., sleeping between 6 to 8 hours and reducing stress may help with weight loss.

Researchers found that that people trying to lose at least 10 pounds were more likely to reach that goal if they had lower stress levels and slept more than six hours but not more than eight hours a night.

To investigate, researchers studied more than 500 participants over six months.  Study participants were asked to lose at least 10 pounds over six month by attending weekly meetings at which they were weighed and advised to reduce calorie intake by 500 calories per day.  They also adopted a low-fat, low-sugar diet with lots of fruits and vegetables, as well as increased physical activity to 180 minutes a week, and kept daily food records.

Participants also were asked to report levels of insomnia, stress and depression, and to record how much time they slept and spent watching television or using a computer.

Researchers found that participants with the lowest stress levels who also got more than six hours, but not more than eight hours, of sleep were most likely to lose at least 10 pounds. In fact, nearly three-quarters of this group were successful at losing the weight and were twice as likely to be successful as those who reported the highest stress levels and got six or fewer hours of sleep per night.

Interestingly, researchers found that people who kept more food records and attended more meetings were more likely to lose weight.

Researchers suggest that if you want to increase your chances of losing weight, reduce your stress level and get adequate sleep.  The findings were published in the International Journal of Obesity.

All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.