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Does Sleep Change Diet?

  • Trouble sleeping

One of the most common problems experienced by people with hypothyroidism and Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome is weight gain. And, to make matters worse, poor thyroid function makes it very difficult for a person to lose weight. This double whammy can create a very frustrating situation for anyone suffering from this condition. Thankfully, with proper treatment, this issue can be resolved, but the path getting there may be slow and uncertain.

Many of my patients have voiced their frustration with this issue which is why I have spent a great deal of time researching the subject of weight loss and gain. Thankfully, there are countless scientific studies investigating this topic but, my research has uncovered some little-known pearls that I’d like to share with you. My hope is that you can use this information to turn it into a meaningful course of action.

Let’s take two very enjoyable things in life – eating and sleeping. I know that quality sleep can be a challenging issue for many of us, especially when stress levels are high. One interesting study, conducted in Australia, explored the relationship between eating and sleeping with over 6000 women participants.

The women recorded their sleep patterns, which fell into one of three categories:

1. Average sleep, about 8 hours without difficulty,
2. Average sleep of about 8 hours, but with sleep difficulties and severe tiredness, and
3. Poor sleep, with sleeping difficulties and severe tiredness.

They also recorded their daily diet in a journal.

It was found that those in group 3, with the least and poorest quality sleep, had the highest intake of fat, particularly saturated fat, which can lead to weight gain.

Interestingly, normalizing a person’s low body temperature often helps them sleep much better, and this alone may help them maintain a lower weight.

There may be a few reasons for the correlation between increased fat intake with less sleep; possibly the body craves more calories for energy and fat offers the most calories as compared to protein and carbohydrates. Or, perhaps when people are chronically tired, there is a tendency to pick up fast or processed foods for meals (which tend to be high in saturated fat) instead of cooking at home.

Regardless of the exact reason, it’s important to be aware of the end result: when people are sleep deprived, they tend to consume more fat. We must become aware of our individual dietary patterns so we can make better decisions and a concerted effort to eat healthy when we are tired and sleep deprived.

If you’re having problems with unwanted weight gain, be aware of your sleep patterns, and be sure to check your thyroid. If you’re told your TSH is normal, then take the next step to measure your body temperature. CLICK HERE for directions. If your temperatures run low, you may have Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome.

This condition can be successfully treated and resolved without a lifetime of taking thyroid medication. If you would like to find a practitioner who understands Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome, please use our physician locator tool.

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