Skip Nav
How to Start Exercising
Beginner Fitness Tips
3 Simple Ways to Start a Fitness Routine Without Feeling Overwhelmed
Jillian Michaels Workout Advice
Jillian Michaels
Jillian Michaels Says to Avoid This Habit at the Gym If You Want to See Results
Starbucks Calories Infographic
Calorie Breakdowns
If You're Starbucks-Obsessed but Watching Your Calories, You Need to See This Infographic

Lack of Sleep Makes You Crave Junk Food, Study Says

Further Proof That Sleep Is Essential For Weight Loss

You've probably been there before: you stay up all night cramming for an exam or finishing a work deadline and reach for a pile of junk food to fuel you through the night. A new study shows that you're not alone — lack of sleep causes changes in your brain's reward and rational thinking centers to make it harder to resist fatty, high-calorie foods after dark.

The small study, published in the journal Nature Communications, measured the brain activity of 23 young adults when shown fatty foods like pizza and doughnuts, as well as when they were shown healthy foods like carrots and apples. The more sleep-deprived the participants, the more their brains' reward centers lit up when shown the high-calorie foods. The study also found that lack of sleep led to impaired decision-making activity in another region of the brain.

It's a twofold assault to your weight-loss goals — you crave more high-calorie foods while simultaneously lacking the rational decision-making skills to resist them — which is further evidence that getting seven to nine hours of sleep a night should be part of your weight-loss plan. A previous study found that sleepy people end up eating about 300 calories more throughout the day, so if you want to eat right, rest up.

Image Source: Thinkstock
From Our Partners
Magnesium For the Keto Diet
Best Weighted Blankets
Trader Joe's Low-Calorie Ice Cream
Jillian Michaels Workout Advice
Should I Count Total Carbs or Net Carbs on the Keto Diet?
Keto Diet Grocery List From Trader Joe's
Jillian Michaels's Tips For Gaining Muscle
Ruth Bader Ginsburg's Fitness Mantra
Exercise For Mental Health Study
Disney Sleep Hotline 2018
Ruth Bader Ginsburg Workout
How to Lose Weight For Good, According to a Fat-Loss Coach
From Our Partners
Latest Fitness
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds