People who under-sleep and/or stay up late are more likely to develop diabetes, metabolic syndrome, lose muscle mass, and make poor late night food choices.

(As Coach David says, “At 11 pm, you usually do not reach for grilled chicken and a spinach salad!”)

And if you have weight loss goals, sleep deprivation makes you more prone to various factors that lead to gaining weight. Sleep deprivation leads to higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which increases your appetite.

Lack of sleep hinders your body’s ability to process sugar, which can increase blood sugar. Finally, hormones that regulate appetite are also affected. (One study showed that sleep deprived subjects ate, on average, 300 more calories per day than their well-rested counterparts.)

If you are not getting to sleep before 11 pm and/or not sleeping enough (7-8 hours for most adults), you might try these simple strategies to help.
• Reduce time with your computer, TV, or iPhone a couple of hours before going to bed.
• Cut back or eliminate alcohol.
• Eat earlier.
• Dim lights an hour or so before bedtime.
• Make sure bedroom is dark and cool.
• Stop drinking coffee by noon.
• Get your daily exercise.

Work on these for this month, and you will feel better and improve your health. Think of sleep as nutrition for your brain and body because when you sleep, you rest and repair.
• Work hard
• Play hard
• Sleep hard

We are going to kick May’s butt heading towards summer, right?