WIN Wyoming

Thought Bullets
June 2006

Lack of sleep and weight gain:  Intriguing preliminary research findings

I became a firm believer in the importance of adequate sleep several years ago when a Wyoming Highway Patrolman gave a field sobriety test to several senior 4-H members during an educational program I helped coordinate.  One 4-H member did not pass the test, not because she had been drinking alcohol, but because she had not slept much for several days due to studying for final exams. The patrolman stated that drivers suffering from sleep deprivation were a growing problem on the state’s highways.  Research over the last several years is also finding a possible link between sleep deprivation and weight gain. The theory is that lack of sleep may actually increase your appetite, which can result in weight gain. Other studies suggest a possible link with sleep deprivation and an increase in blood sugar and blood pressure.

Motl J.  Sleep more, lose weight. Links between obesity and the lack of sleep are intriguing.  The Free Lance-Star. August 8, 2005.

Compiled by Betty Holmes, MS, RD

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