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Do I Burn Fat Whilst Sleeping?

Do I Burn Fat Whilst Sleeping?

Burning fat whilst sleeping?? Surely not!


When you think of burning fat, you imagine a tough workout at the gym or running a half marathon and eating a healthy, lean diet.  This may be one way of burning fat, however, research has shown that a good night’s sleep is imperative to keeping that unwanted fat at bay.


A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that sleep is one of the most powerful fat burning tools.  Two groups were put on a calorie-controlled diet (1450 per day) for 14 days.  Both groups consisted of overweight non-smokers.  One group had an average of 8.5 hours sleep a night and the other group had 5.5 hours.

Both groups lost weight.  However, half the weight loss for the group that had a good night’s sleep was fat, whereas only a quarter of the weight loss was fat in the sleep deprived group.  The study showed that those extra three hours of sleep translated into burning an extra 400 calories per night. The results clearly showed that people burn fat while they sleep.

Insulin Levels and Sleep

The results of a study in Spain were published in The International Journal of Obesity.  Four hundred adults ate the same food, performed the same exercise routine but they had their main meal at different times of day – one group before 3 p.m. and the other much later.  The group that ate before 3 p.m. lost 25% more weight.

This is where insulin levels come in.  Insulin is our fat making hormone.  Our levels of insulin need to be lowered before our bodies start burning fat.  If we eat too much shortly before sleeping, our insulin levels rise, our digestion slows down and our bodies start storing fat.

Eating a main meal at lunch time and, ensuring a good night’s sleep, is a sure way to burn fat while you sleep.

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