Sunday, 8 January 2017

Sugar, Fat and REM Sleep Loss Link

To Your Heath from Pinnacle!

From a study conducted by the University of Tsukuba comes strong evidence of a direct link between sugary and high-fat foods and REM sleep loss. 

The university’s researchers in their International Institute for Integrative Sleep Medicine have probed this connection with a new chemical-genetic technique to attempt to reverse the effect of sleep loss and sucrose consumption.

What is the Connection?

Until now, what wasn’t so clear is how REM sleep loss impacts the brain’s messaging, and how that messaging serves to trigger the desire to eat unhealthy foods. 

In a quick summary, the medial prefrontal cortex may play a controlling role in what we want to eat.  When we’re sleep deprived, an increased desire is triggered for the foods that are best at packing on unwanted pounds. 

What is REM Sleep?

Most all living creatures sleep, but REM sleep is unique to mammals, and many aspects of REM sleep have always fascinated – and perplexed – researchers.

REM sleep is most closely associated with dreaming. Signs include random or rapid eye movement.  Our bodies remain astonishingly still during REM sleep. Researchers have found that obese people, typically exposed to more high calorie foods by their lifestyle choices, commonly have increased prefrontal cortex activity.

Study Inhibited Mice

Researchers induced REM sleep loss in mice to block prefrontal cortex neurons and impact the behaviors they control and influence. This part of the brain plays a major role in how we respond to what we eat – by taste, smell and texture.  Unknown until now, was how this part of brain also impacts our desire for specific foods that are fatty and high in sugar, increasingly so when we’re short on sleep.

Sleeping better may even prove to ultimately play a role in more effective weight control.

So, get your sleep! You’ll feel better, be healthier and more!

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