Want to keep off weight? Get your rest

With the turning of the calendar, many people make New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier, exercise and lose weight. But if people don’t resolve to get more sleep, they may be hurting their prospects of success.

sleep and losing weightSeveral studies have shown a lack of sleep can have an impact on weight gain. Now researchers at the University of Leeds in West Yorkshire, England, have added to the data on the link between sleep and weight.

Researchers found that those who slept about six hours a night had a waist 1.2 inches larger than those who slept nine hours a night. Additionally, insufficient sleep could contribute to metabolic diseases such as diabetes, according to a July 31 article on ScienceDaily.com.

The study included 1,615 adults. Participants reported their sleep and food intake, and researchers took blood samples and recorded their weight, waist measurement and blood pressure. The findings were published in the July 27 issue of PLOS One.

“Because we found that adults who reported sleeping less than their peers were more likely to be overweight or obese, our findings highlight the importance of getting enough sleep,” says lead researcher Laura Hardie.