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by Tony Gjokaj August 21, 2020 3 min read
According to the CDC, one-third of US adults don't get enough sleep in their lives. As a result, we encounter a lot of health issues with not just physical health, but mental health as well.
Sleep plays a large role in mental health. In fact, poor sleep can lead to issues with depression, anxiety, stress, and more.
One of the biggest challenges in my early teens was the inability to fall asleep. I had issues with insomnia and depression, which also impeded my sleep.
In this post, we are going to dive into how sleep affects our mind and body.
Let's dive in!
There is an inverse relationship when it comes to sleep and depression. With symptoms of depression, it is difficult to sleep... and sleep-deprivation has been shown to cause depression.
We have to think of sleep as restorative. It takes out the waste our brains accumulate and help us recover.
Anxiety is a huge issue that a lot of us are encountering today. Among most 18 to 25-year olds, more than half encounter anxiety challenges. In addition, most 18 to 25-year olds are also sleep deprived... and there is a correlation between the two.
According to one study, poor sleep has a correlation with anxiety disorders. I can attest to this from my teenage years, where most of my anxiety and depression was because I did not sleep well.
Most of my friends and people I previously coached in exercise dealt with anxiety issues as a result of their 5-6 hours of sleep.
When you aren't getting enough sleep, your stress and fatigue levels elevate. In fact, poor sleep makes it more difficult to manage or cope with stress.
On average, adults who sleep fewer than 8 hours report higher levels of stress (compared to others who sleep 8 hours).
According to various studies, poor sleep has a large connection to weight gain and obesity. This is because when we are sleep-deprived, ghrelin (our appetite hormone) spikes and leptin (our appetite suppressor) decreases.
Our bodies start to crave more high-calorie fatty foods to satiate our appetite. However, calorie-dense foods are difficult to satiate appetite with, so we tend to overconsume calories as a result. In fact, according to one meta-analysis, sleep-deprived individuals consumed on average 385 extra calories.
This is why it's super important to optimize your sleep, and if you're not... you're missing a potential weight loss opportunity.
Most of these issues have an inverse relationship with sleep, where you have trouble getting enough sleep when you encounter anxiety or depression. The only solution is to build sleep pressure so that you allow yourself to get well-needed sleep.
Here are six ways to improve your sleep and build sleep pressure with lifestyle changes:
Making good lifestyle changes will help with your sleep, but always seek help from a professional if you continue to struggle with proper sleep.
Thanks for reading Reforged Legion!
Any questions or comments? Throw them below or email me at email@example.com!
Tony is the Owner of Reforged. He is a PN1 Certified Nutrition Coach and has been in the fitness space for over a decade. His goal is to help millions exercise their way out of depression and anxiety.
by Tony Gjokaj April 25, 2023 3 min read
Exercise can feel like a chore, and even if you know it’s good for your health, the motivation to get moving sometimes just isn’t there.
But it doesn’t have to be a burden - by making exercise meaningful to you, it can become something fun and rewarding!
Here are five ways to make exercise more meaningful!
by Tony Gjokaj October 07, 2022 4 min read
Men, I know what it is like to be overweight and depressed.
Not having the energy to do anything but relax and sleep.
While relaxation and sleep are incredibly important, they can make us feel like we are not making progress in our lives.
And when depression hits, it’s very difficult to push through with exercise and weight loss.
But did you know that even though it takes time and some effort, you don’t need to get obsessively crazy over it?
In fact, with just a few small adjustments, you can lose weight, fight back against depression, and take your life back.
If you're serious about shedding pounds and pushing away those depression demons, here are five tips that can help get you started.
by Tony Gjokaj September 05, 2022 4 min read
A few weeks ago, my buddy Grant and I talked about nutrition.
We talked about how he's lost over 120 pounds so far with the weight loss progress he's been making.
This is all because he has been making healthier decisions over time.
One of the newest challenges he's facing right now is he's got a new job. He's working 10 to 12 hour days with physical demanding labor.
And what's been happening for him is that he's been super exhausted, he's not motivated to meal prep, he's having trouble trying to sit down and cook foods doesn't have the energy doesn't have the time.
So what I propose is five tips that you can use to live a more on the go fast food healthy eating lifestyle.
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