New research from Uppsala University, Sweden, shows that a specific brain region that contributes to a person's appetite sensation is more activated in response to food images after one night of sleep loss than after one night of normal sleep. Poor sleep habits can therefore affect people's risk of becoming overweight in the long run. The findings are published in theJournal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
The research described in this article backs up what I already know from personal experience: The less quality sleep we get, the more our body craves energy rich foods. While the article discusses sleep loss rather than the poor quality sleep, I think scientists should be able to note similar patterns in those who suffer from sleep apnea, abnormal breathing while sleeping. Common symptoms include loud snoring, restless sleep, and sleepiness during the daytime. Often with sleep apnea, doctors say it is caused by being obese. While it may be a contributing factor, I think that sleep apnea itself increases appetite and contributes to gaining weight. Therefore, treating sleep apnea may be yet another way to keep your weight in check.
I look forward to reading your thoughts in the comments on this blog entry.