Feelgood Health

Weight loss culprits: Sleep and stress!

Do you still put on weight no matter how carefully you diet & exercise? Are you stressed and struggling to sleep? Could theses factors be making you fat? There are so many diets out there, the Atkins diet, Tim Noakes diet, Alkaline Diet and Mediterranean Diet… but what if the answer was closer to home?

SLEEP TO SLIM

Most doctors tend to agree that sleep debt is like credit card debt! Once you are running on lack of sleep, it accumulates and it's very difficult to get those needed hours back. Being tired may seem innocent enough, but chances are it's hitting your waistline the hardest!

Yes, lack of sleep can be directly responsible for weight gain. "When you are sleep deprived, it wrecks your metabolism," says Michael Breus, PhD, author of Beauty Sleep. On average the human body needs 7.5 hours of quality sleep per night for optimal metabolism. If you are getting this amount already, adding more hours will not make you lose weight, BUT if you currently get less than 7.5 hours sleep per night, aiming for the hour will help you drop the kilos.

How does it work? There are two hormones that signal the brain to eat and to stop eating. If you've ever been really tired and reached for a doughnut, chances are Ghrelin is to blame. Ghrelin is the hormone that tells you to eat and when you are sleep deprived the levels of this hormone are raised! In contrast, the hormone Leptin tells the body to stop eating and when you are sleep deprived you have less of this hormone! So in both cases, sleep deprivation is a major factor when it comes to weight sabotage! 

Here are some tips to help get your sleep hours up:

  • Switch to decaf coffee from 2pm onwards
  • Exercise in the early evening, but not close to bed time
  • Eat a light meal for dinner and stop eating 2 hours before bed
  • Have a glass of warm milk an hour before bed
  • Research natural remedies that can help you sleep

STRESS LESS TO WEIGH LESS 

Unfortunately stress is a part of life in the modern world, but when it comes to weight loss it can be the ultimate enemy. In fascinating research, doctors now see the connection between high stress levels and increased appetite.

The amazing connection goes back to our ancestors who had to survive through the flight or flight response to danger. Today, stress at home or the work place still triggers this response in our neuroendocrine system. The brain reacts by releasing stress hormones, which would enable us to flee a perceived danger (or deadline!).

The three hormones released when we are stressing are adrenalin (giving us instant energy), corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH) and Cortisol. Cortisol stays around in the body much longer, even after the stress has passed a bit. Because today's stress doesn't often result in fighting or fleeing physically, the body reacts the same way and since your neuro-endocrine system doesn't know you didn't fight or flee, it still responds to stress with the hormonal signal which may make you feel hungry. This can lead to the cycle of stress eating. In addition, researchers have discovered when we are stressed, we crave carbs more - due to the fight or flight response requiring energy for our muscles!

Here are some tips to help get you break the stress cycle:

  • Exercise to help expend energy and use up adrenalin! Just make sure it's not something stressful like rock climbing!
  • Sleep for 7.5 hours a night - lack of sleep leads to increased Cortisol and weight gain!
  • Eat 6 small meals per day to balance blood sugar and decrease Cortisol levels
  • Do relaxing activities - the key is they must make you feel relaxed. even reading a book or watching a movie, as long as you feel relaxed.
  • When stressed choose high fibre non-processed foods like multi-grain flakes, rye crackers and oatmeal. This will curb your appetite.
  • Don't smoke and avoid alcohol. According to the American Institute of Stress, cigarettes, caffeine-laden soft drinks, coffee, tea, and even chocolate can cause cortisol levels to rise!
  • Research natural remedies that can help you relax and combat anxiety

FREE 1 DAY LIVER CLEANSE! 

The liver plays an important role when it comes to weight loss. The liver is the organ that cleanses any impurities from the body and helps to flush out waste products, including fat! This is why the Liver is the organ that often becomes 'fatty' when eating habits are bad. Below is a FREE one-day liver cleanse diet to help detox and boost any weight loss efforts

MORNING  
Pour a cup of boiling water over two slices of freshly sliced lemon and leave to cool slightly while you get dressed. Drink while it is still warm. The oils and juices released from the lemon and the lemon rind will assist your liver to produce bile, one of the major fat burners in your body.

BREAKFAST 
Start with 15 drops of Feelgood Health Detox Drops and 15 drops of EcoSlim in at least 1/4 glass of water 
Cut up one orange and one apple onto a plate. Sit somewhere peaceful and slowly eat the fruit, making sure that you chew each mouthful well and appreciate the flavours and the colours of the food you are eating. When you are finished, have a full glass of water.

MID-MORNING 
Eat an apple or an orange and drink a cup of herbal tea. No sugar is allowed, but you can use an artificial sweetener as a substitute. Try and opt for the sucralose variety rather than those that contain aspartame or saccharine. 

LUNCH 
Make sure that you sit somewhere peaceful to eat your lunch and begin with a full glass of water containing a slice or two of fresh lemon and 15 drops each of Feelgood Health Detox Drops and EcoSlim Drops. Make sure that you drink the whole glass. For lunch you can make a salad out of at least five of the following raw ingredients: lettuce, tomato, carrots, cucumber, apple, celery, onion, spring onion, green pepper, raw peas, raw green beans, apple, grapes, watermelon, pineapple, sunflower seeds, sprouts (lentil, mung bean, etc - but no wheat sprouts). Eat as much as you like!

MID-AFTERNOON 
Eat an apple or an orange and drink a cup of herbal tea.

DINNER 
The same as for lunch. Remember to begin with a full glass of water containing a slice or two of fresh lemon and 15 drops each of Feelgood Health Detox Drops and EcoSlim Drops.

BEFORE BEDTIME 
One banana OR half an avocado pear OR one apple and a cup of herbal tea OR two 100% rye crackers with a cup of warm milk (low fat or skim). This is a lovely sleepy time snack!

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