Many people just take it for granted to toss and turn night after night. Whether it’s stress, a TV show you can’t stop on, or a late cup of coffee keeping you awake, not getting enough sleep can leave you feeling exhausted, unproductive, and physically uncomfortable the next day. Unfortunately, sleeping too long can have similar effects.
However, that’s not the only effect an incorrect amount of sleep can have – a new study suggests that it can also add to your risk of obesity. Read on to find out how much sleep research has shown can predict your risk of obesity. And if you’re looking to shed a few pounds, check out these 15 underrated weight loss tips that actually work.
Shutterstock / Doucefleur
If you notice your weight is climbing or have a family history of obesity, you may want to close your eyes a little more at night.
A study recently published in the Journal of the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found that of a group of 19,650 people studied, those who slept seven hours or less at night consumed greater amounts of carbohydrates, fats, caffeine, and excess sugar of snacks than those who slept longer.
“Not only do we not sleep when we stay up late, but we also do all of these obesity-related behaviors: lack of physical activity, longer screen time, food choices that we consume as snacks rather than meals, all of these have greater effects when sleep recommendations are followed or not adhered to “, explains Christopher A. Taylor, PhD, RDN, LD, FAND, Professor of medical dietetics and family medicine at Ohio State University and lead author on the study, in a statement. “We know that lack of sleep is broadly related to obesity, but it’s all of these little behaviors that are linked to how this happens,” added Taylor.
Related: Sign up for our newsletter to get the latest health and fitness news!
It is not just your obesity risk that can affect your sleeping habits. A study conducted by researchers at the University of Warwick found that people who reduced their sleep length from seven to five hours a night had a 1.7 times higher risk of total mortality and twice as much risk of death from cardiovascular problems than those who did who slept longer.
Related: This is the best workout for better sleep, new study results
However, it is not just a short sleep that can affect your weight. According to a study published in the journal Sleep, of a group of 276 adults between the ages of 21 and 64, those who slept between nine and ten hours at night had a 21% higher risk of obesity.
Shutterstock / Syda Productions
While children typically need longer rest periods each day, adults generally benefit from getting a certain number of hours of sleep at night.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults between 18 and 60 should try to sleep more than seven hours at night, people between 61 and 64 should try to sleep between seven and nine hours, and people aged 65 and over should sleep between seven and eight hours each night.
If you’re looking to improve your sleep, check out these 7 Diet Changes You Can Make Now to Sleep Better Tonight.