Sleep-Texting Can Make You Fat

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It’s 10 o’clock and you’re still awake.  There is still so much to do.  A load of laundry and then wait for the end of the dryer cycle.  As long as you’re up, may as well finish that spreadsheet you were working on at the office, and see what’s everyone’s doing on Facebook.  Before you know it, its 1 a.m., and now you’re getting hungry.  Should have been in bed hours ago, and you have to get up at 6 a.m. to get the kids off to school and get to work.

No wonder you’re dragging at work, half asleep with a foggy brain and a short fuse.  Sleep deprivation can cause a whole host of symptoms and conditions that make the waking hours difficult. If you’re starting a new job, it’s important to be at your best.  Sure there’s a lot to do in a day, but not getting enough sleep can sabotage your performance.

Difficulty concentrating is one of the effects of sleep deprivation noted in an article in Psych Central.  You become less optimistic and darned near anti-social.  Not good for working with a team or impressing the boss.  Stress levels go up and you have difficulty concentrating. These conditions can have a negative effect on your health and performance. 

Not getting enough sleep actually causes an increase in appetite.  In fact, The Business Insider reported that losing just one night of sleep can send you binging on high-calorie, high-fat food.   Lack of sleep can weaken your willpower and your ability to make good decisions, the two things you need to make good food choices.  All of a sudden those donuts left over from yesterday are too good to pass up.  All your good intentions and weeks of restraint go out the window.  You’re tired and hungry.

A new study in the journal Obesity found that people that stayed awake wanted more food, more calories and fattier foods than normal.  Of course, if you’re awake longer you have more hours in the day to eat.  The foods we choose at night or in the wee hours of the morning aren’t healthy choices.  Where’s that leftover pizza?  A couple of brownies and milk, or the rest of the blueberry pie from dinner.  Fattening, sugar laden, carb heavy foods satisfy those late-night cravings.  Getting enough sleep may be the biggest weight loss secret of all.

Research shows that the bad sleep habits picked up while young continue into adulthood.  A new cause of sleep deprivation is the result of the digital age.  Taking a Smartphone to bed leads to texting and posting on social media long into the night.  Just the brightness of the phone screen in the dark can disturb sleep.  Texting has become so much a part of life that some young people are actually sleep-texting.  A study showed that out of 300 young people surveyed, 25 percent of them admitted to texting while they were sleeping.  Not really asleep or awake, they woke up to text message sent in their sleep.

Loss of sleep probably won’t make you lose your job, but it can lead to a host of conditions that can affect your health and job performance.  Just turn it off…your phone, the TV, IPad, Touch, radio…whatever is keeping you awake.  You may even wake up a little thinner than you were the night before.

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