Sleep - get some!

Sleep is SO IMPORTANT! Not sleeping enough—less than seven hours of sleep per night—can reduce and undo the benefits of dieting, according to research. Turns out, sleep deprivation is a little like being drunk. You just don’t have the mental clarity to make good complex decisions, specifically with regards to the foods you eat—or foods you want to avoid. This isn’t helped by the fact that when you’re overtired,... you also have increased activity in the amygdala, the reward region of your brain. This is why sleep deprivation destroys all diets; think of the amygdala as mind control—it makes you crave high-calorie foods. Normally you might be able to fight off this desire, but because your insular cortex (another portion of your brain) is weakened due to sleep deprivation, you have trouble fighting the urge and are more likely to indulge in all the wrong foods.

Muscle is the enemy of fat—it helps you burn fat and stay young. But sleep (or lack thereof) is the enemy of muscle. In order to reach your fitness goals, you must address your sleeping patterns.

1. Start by going to sleep 10 minutes early every day and by the end of the week, you would have gained at least one hour more of sleep!
2. Don’t eat a big meal right before bedtime
3. Don't watch tv or go on social media one hour before bedtime
4. Exercise regularly - try some stretching/yoga at night
5. Avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol in the late evening.
6. If you have trouble sleeping at night, don’t nap during the day
7. Establish relaxing pre-sleep rituals, such as a warm bath, drink tea or a few minutes of reading
8 Create a pleasant sleep environment. Make it as dark and quiet as possible

I hope you will join me in getting enough sleep this week!