Friday, April 16, 2010

AVOID short sleep AND “diet” foods to lose fat....

Today's Post: Friday, 4-16-2010

Part I: Avoid short sleep

Yesterday, I got an email from Dr. Allen S. Josephs Co-Founder & Director of .

In it he notes that a recent meta-analysis of sleep duration & obesity analyzed 30 different studies involving about 635,000 men, women and children.
These Researchers defined short sleep duration as less than 10 hours a night for children and less than five hours a night for adults.

Their meta-analysis found a reliable link between such short sleep duration and increased average body mass index (BMI) AND the incidence of obesity in both children and adults.

And, earlier this week, this news item came out that had recent research showing that for most adults, even younger ones, that 4 hours sleep was clearly enough to trigger this effect.:

“People get hungrier when they're starved for sleep Reuters Mon, Apr 12, 2010

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - People who are trying to stay trim may want to make sure they get plenty of sleep.

In a study, researchers found that normal-weight young men ate a Big Mac's-worth of extra calories when they'd gotten four hours of sleep the night before compared to when they slept for eight hours.

Given the findings, and the fact that people have been sleeping less and getting fatter over the past few decades, "sleep restriction could be one of the environmental factors that contribute to the obesity epidemic," they write in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.”

In this same study, they found that the normal sleep pattern of these young men did NOT produce this effect. And, if I recall correctly that was about 6 & ½ to 7 & ½ hours a night.

I think there are separate four reasons for this finding or separate causes of the short sleeping that have implications for how to best use this info to lose fat.

1. Some people are so strapped for funds they work two or three jobs or have such a bad commute to work, they get such short sleep. This may not be easy to fix.

But, you can do some things in some cases to make it temporary.

Arrange to telecommute two or three days a week and/or commute after and before the rush hour to both cut your commute time and increase your time at home. For example, if you telecommute Monday and Friday and work from 10:30 am to 3 pm with a 15 minute at your desk lunch on Wednesday, you only need do the 5 am to 8 pm workday on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Then allow yourself to eat a lot but of health OK NON-fattening foods on Tuesdays and Thursdays and do your calorie restriction on the other five days.

If you work two or three jobs, arrange to make it just two jobs and make one an hourly plus commission sales job. Then get good enough at that job to only do that one and make more than you make now with two jobs.

2. Some people get such short sleep because they watch a lot of late-night TV.

That’s deadly for fat loss. You burn fewer calories watching TV than you do sleeping. Then by staying up to do it, you eat MORE the next day! Yikes!

Keep cutting back on lower priority shows until you get your hours of TV a week below 20 or 15 or 10. Tape those shows that you really like enough to keep after you do this that show late at night and watch them earlier the next day or the next weekend. (In fact, you may be able to spend less time watching commercials you don’t like this way.) AND, avoid eating junk foods and drinking soft drinks while you watch TV. Instead get a treadmill or exercise bike to use at low moderate exertion while you watch TV.

Except for special occasions, get your news, weather, and sports from the faster and more flexible to schedule newspaper reading or online. Simply refuse to sit for hours late at night on the schedule of TV station to get news you could get earlier or later & at a better time of day and can access in less than half that much time.

3. You, like Dr Josephs admitted to in his email, are so motivated and interested in life that you have trouble getting enough sleep because you fill your days with so much.

That one is also tough to fix. But, here are two suggestions.

Simply refuse to sleep less than 5 hours a night, try for at least 6 or 6 & ½ hours most nights; and let yourself have more on weekends. And, try to get closer to the 6 or 6 & ½ hours most nights than 5 or 5 & ½.

Take multiple actions to ensure you get QUALITY sleep at virtually the same time each day so you aren’t getting 4 hours worth of sleep in your 5 to 6 & ½ hours in bed. Sleep on your side instead of on your back. Exercise vigorously for at least 10 minutes almost every day. (And, if you have sleep apnea, make sure to keep losing fat until you’ve lost all you need to lose and keep it off. In addition, get the Pillar procedure done if you can. It hardly requires any time off work and has turned off sleep apnea in even people who are still obese. ) Make sure your bedroom is dark, quiet, and warm and/or cool enough you can sleep well.

4. If you have trouble getting to sleep and are already doing this first set of things, try taking valerian &/or going to Dr Al Sears supplement website at and getting his “instant sleep” spray dispensed melatonin, NATIVE REST. That way you don’t make yourself groggy for an hour before bedtime or take it by mouth at bedtime and not have it work until an hour or two later.

And, stay completely away from prescription sleep drugs. Some are dangerous because they tend to cue mindless and not conscious sleepwalking and other actions. (People have died during these.) They are virtually all addictive. They tend to NOT produce very restful sleep. And, even worse, they make it really hard to get up the next day.

Valerian does none of those things and wears off overnight. And if you are a bit too groggy or laid back the next day from the spray melatonin with the recommended 3 or 4 puffs, do one or two brief puffs instead. If you do the regular exercise and go to bed at virtually the same time each night—and take the valerian if you are a bit too wound up—that will still help you sleep.

Part II. Avoid “diet” foods

Eating real, organic, produce and naturally raised or wild caught animal protein foods -- mostly nonstarchy vegetables and some beans and lentils -- is what you should be eating to lose fat.

“Diet” foods tend to be fattening refined grain foods, semifoods that are fake versions of snack foods and desserts with natural foods like butter and cream replaced by fewer calories of hydrogenated oils or sugar or high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeteners.

They then have few calories per serving the real food versions they replace. But their downside is obnoxious and tends to sabotage permanent fat loss.

They are still made with refined grains and since they have fewer calories people tend to eat them every day or eat more of them per day. A recent study even found that people tend to begin to not enjoy them very much and to return to the full calorie versions which can help prevent permanent fat loss.

These foods tend to still be high glycemic, to be made with refined grains, and to substitute for the real foods you should be mostly eating instead. That means they cause rebound, excess hunger too—just like the regular treats do!

Even worse, their artificial sweeteners tend to cause you to want more real sugar and are very, very likely directly bad for your health besides.

The solution is to have the real thing instead that has sugar and butter. But have tiny servings just a few times a week or normal servings just a few times a month AND eat them after a meal of real and low glycemic foods to lessen their sugar shock on your body. In some cases, such as chocolate, the unsweetened versions can still be a treat. Those you can have more often.

The other thing you can do is to make your produce and protein foods so tasty and savory from extra virgin olive oil and spices such as garlic and basil and more that you find them an enjoyable treat that you can have every day.

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