Why spend hours dieting or at the gym when you could be shedding those pounds while catching some Zzz’s? While it’s not exactly possible to lose weight overnight, there are different hacks and tips you can utilize in your own life to burn more fat while you sleep. Phone screens, bedtime, and other daily habits might be why your body is stubbornly holding on to weight. Here are all the ways you can make your body more efficient for weight loss.
1. Sleep more
It seems impossible that sleeping is the fastest route to weight loss, but a lack of sleep actually causes the body to produce less fullness hormones, while it produces more ghrelin, a hormone that promotes hunger. Being tired equals being hungry, so get that rest.
2. Sleep in cooler temperatures
Sleeping in a hot room lowers your ability to metabolize fat. When you turn down that thermostat (66 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal) you increase the ability to metabolize fat, and also increase the amount of calorie-burning fat in your body by a huge 42%. It will also make insulin sensitivity better, lowering risks of diabetes. Sleep naked to enhance these benefits!
3. Get curtains
If the street light comes in through your window, you may want to invest in shades or curtains. After the sun sets, our bodies naturally produce melatonin, but both indoor lights and dim streetlights can slow the onset of melatonin being produces in our bodies. Tossing and turning from light might be what’s stopping you from shedding pounds.
4. Do intermittent fasting at night
This restricted eating schedule keeps your body healthy. It allows for cell repair, but can feel extreme for those who are used to eating throughout the day. When fasting, the human growth hormone increase, allowing muscles to synthesize. Start by creating a no-food window at night that lasts approximately 12 hours.
5. No phones
Phones and laptop screens emit blue light, which keeps our systems wide awake, signalling that it’s daytime. Switch your phones to “night shift” or set a cutoff time for electronic devices. If you don’t, it’ll increase hunger and resistance to insulin.
6. Drink less alcohol
Those cocktails and beers make your body metabolize alcohol instead of putting you into valuable REM sleep. Instead, their alcohol sugars get your liver going, which has to detoxify the liquor and prevents the body from turning fat into ketones, which destroys the fat-burning process. Stick with a glass of wine, and definitely hours before bedtime.
7. Smaller meals
While it’s tempting to wolf down a massive burrito or steaming heap of mac and cheese right before bed, eating large meals will make your body work to digest it rather than properly recharging. So avoid big meals — especially carbs. A big lunch is fine, but try to stick with plant-based ingredients that are naturally high in fiber.
8. Snack on cottage cheese before bed
We know…we just said to not eat before bed, but this snack is actually an anti-snack hack! Consuming cottage cheese can actually help you lose weight because it will allow you to wake up less hungry. The casein in cottage cheese makes it high in protein, and the amino acid tryptophan (also found in turkey) can help you fall asleep faster, and improve sleep quality.
9. Incorporate resistance training
Workouts will help you sleep at night, and can also help you lose weight more-so than a cardio-only routine. Resistance training boosts your metabolism and allows for fat-burning to occur hours after. An easy weight lifting routine will suffice — no need to over-exert yourself. Follow up with a high protein snack. If weightlifting gives you too much energy, make sure to do this a few hours before bedtime.
RELATED: 8 Unique Ways To Get Fit
10. Swap milkshakes for casein shakes
While milkshakes are high in sugar and spike blood sugar, a casein shake made of a vegan protein powder, for example, can boost metabolism overnight. Protein makes your body burn more calories when digesting it. You can swap your dessert with this for a belly fat buster many swear by.
11. Take hot showers at night
If you’re more of a shower-in-the-morning type of person, hear this argument out. Hot showers relieve achy muscles and tension. They also increase the production of oxytocin (our ‘love’ hormone) which is incredibly soothing. The heat from a shower increases your body temperature but then dips after you towel off, relaxing the whole system. Baths will do as well!