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Lack of Sleep Increases Calorie Intake

A recent study published in Psychoneuroendocrinology, reveals that lack of sleep can induce people to eat larger portions of energy-dense food or food that are high in calories. As such, poor sleeping habits could increase the risk of becoming overweight in the long run.

The research involved 16 males with normal weight.  In a buffet-like condition, the participants were asked to choose their ideal ration of 7 meals and 6 snack items under both hungry and satisfied conditions. In one condition, the participants had lack of sleep, while the other condition, they had a complete sleep (about 8 hours).

Main author, Pleunie Hogenkamp explains that the male participants selected large portions of energy-dense food after a night of sleeplessness. What made it more interesting was that the participants chose large portions of energy-dense foods both before and after breakfast. The study therefore suggests that lack of sleep stimulates the appetite leading to large intake of energy-dense foods regardless of satiety.

In a previous publication in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, a study has shown that total loss of sleep for one night in young men with normal weight increases the activity of a region in the brain involved in the desire to eat. According to Hogenkamp, lack of or insufficient sleep is a growing concern in this modern society and that the results of the study may just explain the reason why poor sleeping habits or lack of sleep can affect people’s risk of gaining weight in the long run.


Uppsala Universitet. Lack of sleep? Keep away from the buffet. ScienceDaily.


Posted in: Appetite Control, News Briefs, Sleep, Sleep Deprivation

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