Healthy Eating

Beware: Poor Sleep Triggers Cravings!

woman snacking on a doughnut late at night

Beware: Poor Sleep Triggers Cravings!

That guy in Iowa who attacked a vending machine with a forklift to get his Twix fix? Some days, I can relate.

Have you ever wondered why cravings sometimes seem out of control?

You’ve managed to get your diet in tip-top shape… and then one day you’re driving to work and a greasy breakfast sandwich sounds mouthwatering. At the office, you frantically scrounge up treats from your coworkers’ desks. By lunchtime, you’re ordering a salty, cheesy, greasy pizza to seal the deal.

If you have days like this, rest assured: you’re not crazy. In fact, you probably just had a bad night’s sleep.

Poor Sleep = Cravings

There’s a well-documented connection between poor sleep—even one bad night—and monster food cravings. In one 2013 study, researchers at UC Berkeley compared participants’ brain activity after normal sleep and after sleep deprivation. On the morning after poor sleep, their brain patterns showed increased food desire—specifically, a desire for high-calorie foods.

In another study led by Lauren Hale, an associate professor at Stony Brook University of Medicine, researchers identified an unmistakable trend after looking at the sleep and eating patterns of more than 13,000 teenagers. They observed that poor sleep—fewer than 7 hours a night—went hand in hand with increased consumption of fast food. Those lacking sleep were also less interested in healthy food such as fruits and veggies.

Because of chemical imbalances which could have been corrected during a full night’s sleep, the reward centers in the brain just go crazy over junk food when your body is deprived of sleep.

Thankfully, being aware that poor sleep triggers cravings is half the battle.


How to Recover

The occasional rough night is bound to happen from time to time. Having a way to control cravings can help you stop a dangerous calorie-fest (and a subsequent forklift incident) in its tracks.

One great quick fix to have on hand is IdealShape’s drink mix, IdealBoost. It uses IdealShape’s hunger-blocking formula to eliminate cravings, and it’s a delicious healthy alternative to soda. It’s energizing, with caffeine and green tea, to help you get through the day. (Here’s the research on why caffeine and green tea together accelerate fat loss.) Plus, IdealBoost comes in a convenient single-serving stick pack.

Don’t let a sleepy afternoon stop you in your tracks. Use IdealBoost as a pick-me-up to help get you through your day and stay away from unhealthy snacks.

IdealBoost Weight Loss Energy Drink

Chelsea Ratcliff

Chelsea Ratcliff

Writer and expert

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