Have you been stuffing yourself with unhealthy food lately? You know, sugary items, pizzas, burgers and other junk food. You aren’t doing anything different from your normal routine and yet you crave feel-good food all through the day. While you are at work or watching TV, all you can think of is when would you get your hands on the junk food that you absolutely do not need. Well, the reason goes deeper than you think.

If you have noticed that you are eating more than usual and cannot find the answer to it, take a look at your sleep cycle and see if it has been disrupted lately. And I am sure you’ll find your answer there. People who are sleep-deprived tend to eat more than those who sleep for more than 8 hours.

Studies suggest people who are deprived of sleep eat 385 extra calories per day. In fact, they are less likely to consume proteins and prefer munching on food that is high in calories.

So basically you are not indulging in extra activities but at the same time eating more than you used too. You are obviously going to put on those extra pounds.

Here some other reasons you tend to over eat when you are sleep deprived

1) Bad Food Choices

When your mind is exhausted its hard to make the right choices, especially when it comes to food. You just want to grab onto something delicious and filling. And what’s tastier than junk food? A research found that the part of the brain that responds to rewards and motivation through food gets activated when you are sleep deprived. That means a pastry starts looking more delicious to you than a bowl of whole wheat cereal.

2) You get the Munchies

If you want to feel the munchies without intoxicating yourself, then going sleepless is the way for you. Experts suggest that sleep-deprived individuals feel the same kind of hunger pangs someone feels after smoking weed. It activates the part of the brain which craves food that contains sugar and fats. Now you know how to get the munchies without actually smoke pot.

3) War of the Hormones

Ghrelin and Leptin are two hormones that are responsible for regulating hunger. Ghrelin stimulates appetite while leptin reduces it. So when you don’t get enough sleep, the level of ghrelin increases whereas that of leptin decreases. Pangs of hunger then over take your already tired mind and you start eating unhealthy food.

Sleep deprivation majorly messes up functions of the satiety hormones in your body. You tend to feel more satisfied when you eat junk food. Also, your ability to pick the right food is intensely hampered.

In a recent study, researchers found that individuals who slept for five hours or less made bad food choices and ended up eating 550 extra calories, in comparison to those who managed to get a good night’s sleep.

Well, I am sure now you know exactly why you have been putting on weight. You see, sleep plays an important role in balancing out our bodily functions. And most of us tend to take it for granted. Especially now, when technology has become so accessible. Dozing off without checking every social media handle seems next to impossible and that’s how most people lose sleep and wake up exhausted the whole day. Making sure you get a good night’s rest is exceptionally important. So next you don’t get a good night’s rest, make sure you are aware of it and take control of your eating habits. And yes, don’t forget to get some shut eye! A good night’s sleep never killed anyone.

What do you think?