Is that bag of sour cream and onion chips calling your name extra loud tonight? Is that chocolate chip cookie following you around? Don’t worry, you’re not going crazy, but it’s likely that you could be running low on your beauty sleep.
That’s right, it turns out that when we look at unhealthy, but delicious food, the “reward center” of our brain activates. Researchers from St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital Center found that this part of the brain was especially active when the subjects were sleep deprived.
What’s more, a second study from the University of California at Berkeley revealed that sleep deprivation impairs the frontal lobe of the brain, which helps us control behavior and make complex choices. That means that when we don’t get enough sleep, we’re less likely to choose the healthier option. After all, the American Heart Association reported that sleep deprived individuals ate an average of 500 calories more per day.
So if you want to battle the bulge, the answer is simple, sleep more. Many doctors suggest at least seven to eight hours every night. But if your busy schedule keeps you up late, then keep your fridge and pantry stocked with healthy options so you’re less likely to make bad choices.
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