Sleeping Less May Lead To Poor Diet: Says Study

Henrietta Brewer
January 12, 2018

Study author Wendy Hall, a senior lecturer at King's College London who specializes in diabetes and nutritional sciences told Newsweek that this study alone can not determine whether or not sleep directly caused decreased sugar intake, but she has an idea why the two behaviors may be linked.

The group has provided a chart which contained some suggestions to get better sleep. Their goal was to extend each volunteer's nightly rest by up 1.5 hours. The other half were given no advice. Over one week all the participants recorded their sleep timings and routines as well as their dietary habits.

The team found that, of those who were given the advice, 86 per cent spent more time in bed, and around half than they used to.

At the end of the study the results were quite interesting. Individuals who were able to successfully increase their sleep times consumed far less sugar the following day.

But a new study showed that by getting more sleep, people naturally choose healthier foods within a week, eating on average 10 grams less sugar each day.

Of the focus group, half of the participants were given tips on how to sleep for longer which included reducing caffeine intake and establishing a night time routine.

The participants undertook a 45-minute sleep consultation, kept sleep diaries, and wore motion sensors that detected exactly how long they slept for, and how long they spent in bed before falling asleep. It also includes the sugar present in honey, syrups and fruit juices as well.

A study by researchers at King's College in London found that getting the adequate amount of sleep each night can lead you to eat fewer junk foods that are loaded with sugars and fats.

The study was originally created to investigate whether or not it was possible to successfully help volunteers extend the amount of time they sleep during the evening through a series of tips and pointers.

"Our results also suggest that increasing time in bed for an hour or so longer may lead to healthier food choices", Haya Al Khatib, lead researcher of the study, says.

"We hope to investigate this finding further with longer-term studies examining nutrient intake and continued adherence to sleep extension behaviours in more detail, especially in populations at risk of obesity or cardiovascular disease". However, most research until now has either been observational, leading to the possibility, for instance, that obesity causes poor sleep rather than the other way around, or has looked at the effects of sleep deprivation on appetite.

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