Don’t Sleep = Get Fat

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“Nuggets of Knowledge”

Brought to you by The Modern Nose Clinic.

At the Modern Nose Clinic, we intend to take a grassroots effort, fixing medicine one idea at a time. One major reason why medicine is broken is because patients need to know more. They don't know more because medical knowledge is not accessible. We intend to make things accessible through this series that we call “Nuggets of Knowledge.” Enjoy!

Don't Sleep = Get Fat.

The episode that we refer to as the “Catch-up Sleep” episode.

*YAWN* Excuse me! You know I didn't sleep much last week, and then I thought this weekend maybe I might just catch up, sleep in a little bit, take a nap. You ever do that? If so, this episode's for you.

We know a lot about sleep.

There's even more that we don't know, but this week, there is a little pearl we'd like to share with you. And this has to do with any person who doesn't get enough sleep during the week for any of a variety of reasons and then says, over the weekend, "Well, does it help me to try to kind of catch up by sleeping-in in the morning or taking a nap?" And what does that do? The research looked at three different study groups. Let me show you.

What they did was they took really healthy people. None of these people had any medical problems. They didn't take any medications. They had no psychiatric problems. They had no children. These are the people who eat well and take care of themselves, so we start off with really healthy people, and then we put them into three different groups. Okay?

Group 1

The first group got 9 hours of sleep every night for 10 days. Sounds pretty good! Sounds pretty uncommon... Anyway, that was Group 1.

Group 2

Group 2; they got 5 hours of sleep for 10 days. Okay?

Group 3

And then Group 3, they got – and they're the most interesting ones so kind of wake up, all right, stop yawning – they got 5 hours of sleep from Monday to Friday. Hmm, sound familiar? On the weekend they were allowed to sleep all they wanted to. They could nap, they could sleep-in in the morning, and even on Sunday night, they could go to sleep as early as they wanted to, but starting on Monday night, from Monday to Friday, 5 hours of sleep.

Did they do this with a lot of people? Yes, they did. They took 36 men and 36 women in each of these groups, and they follow them, and they measured them, and that's the interesting part.

Okay, so. Pause. Let's just think a second. What are you guessing? What are you thinking right now? Okay, we got Group 1, the lazy bears; they sleep all the time. We've heard that old tale about the grasshopper who never saved any food and then the ants working hard, so they're a bunch of losers sleeping all the time.

And then, we had the other group, it was also kind of weird, it's like come on. Okay, you slept five hours during the week? Get that, but you didn't sleep-in in the weekend? You didn't catch up when you could? What's wrong with you?! And they went for ten days. You'd expect they may not have done so well at whatever we're measuring because we are talking about sleep, right? Yeah, you're smart.

And then the Group 3s is like a lot of us, right? I hope it won't be. I hope that you will learn from this. You'll tell friends and family, "Don't be that way."

And I tell you right now, the way sleep is, is just like tobacco and smoking was many years ago. You didn't see the changes with tobacco and smoking, so you forgot about it, but they were there, and now it's generally acceptable. It's not a good idea to smoke; you won't live as long. Sleep is exactly the same way. We'll talk about that a little bit.

So, what did we learn?

Group 1 kicked butt. They were the healthiest. Okay?

And then Group 2 actually did better than Group 3. So the real people, the ones who try to catch up, trying to be – you know – like this balance sheet. "I'm a little bit low here; I'll make up for it there." They gained three pounds over two weeks. Let's see what that would be over fifty-six weeks, the year. Yeah! Might be why some of us can't lose weight; might be our problem, is we're messing with our sleep cycle. So this is interesting; suddenly this has become relevant, if not for you, then for one of your co-workers or one of your loved ones, so let's talk about that.

First of all, what I want to say is that – think of it like eating food, and then it makes a lot of sense, I think. It's like – if you decide you need cheeseburgers, and french fries, and pizza, and drink beer, and wine, and just engorge yourself, all week long, Monday through Friday, but on the weekend. Ooh! Then you'll eat kale and celery, and you'll be as healthy as you can. You know how that would end up, so it kind of makes sense. It's not this balance sheet kind of a thing. You need to get into healthy habits. You need to keep it up.

But... More interesting – what you guys really want to know, what you want to talk to your friends and family about – is why is it that not sleeping well makes you fat. Cuz it does! So we got that out of the way, but why?

So back to my whiteboard. Lack of sleep means you will overeat. Okay. And I wanted to introduce a topic called Metabolic Syndrome, okay? And there are three different actors, or three different participants, in this that I want to kind of touch base on. We've got insulin, and insulin it's an important thing, and – you know – it helps us to keep balance in our lives, and our – the way we process blood glucose or sugar is important with insulin. Then we have another hormone – these are all hormones – called Ghrelin, and this is a hormone that makes you hungrier. And then we've got – so he'll be the villain, how about that – and then we've got Leptin, which is the good guy; that's your little fairy godmother, and Leptin is a hormone that decreases your appetite. So now we've got some characters; let's talk about insulin.

There's a lot about balance and harmony, and insulin is not the bad guy, but it's made to be the villain because what happens when you don't sleep enough, your body starts to say we better store more calories in our muscles, and in the liver, and throughout, so you end up gaining weight. You actually secrete hormones that make you hungry, as we talked about, and so you're taking out more calories, and that's why – if you have friends or family, and they say, "I'm trying to lose weight. I feel like I'm starving myself, and it's not working." Now you know why. You can call it Metabolic Syndrome, and you can take it one step further and get yourself a good night's sleep. That's, simply put, what you need to do. Also, that research? Okay. Be the person who sleeps nine hours every night for ten days you'll be smoking! No, not smoking. You will not be smoking. You will be happy. You will live long.

Okay. If you are going to disrupt your sleep, you can't make up for it over the weekend; you actually do worse.

The person who just keeps being sleep-deprived doesn't get this shock to their system. So I'm not saying don't sleep during the week, and then don't sleep during the weekend, but – as it turns out – they did do better. So what of it? How do we translate this into some meaningful change in your life? Make sleep a priority. Promise me that the next month you're gonna make sleep a higher priority. Okay? Try to get to bed earlier. Maybe skip watching that TV series, or don't go down to the TV room after dinner. Man, I know Netflix is kicking it. I'm very intrigued in that company as the Modern Nose Clinic understands who we are. They've done a lot of stuff right, and darn, man, they're bringing on so many episodes; I can't keep up with them. So maybe you turn it off; maybe turn off. Maybe read a book or something. Shut down the electronics; don't be looking at that electronics as you're laying in bed going to sleep. Maybe you listen to a book on tape and turn down that bright monitor. But just get to bed earlier, and see how you feel after two weeks.

So Dr. Douglas Skarada with the Modern Nose Clinic. Welcome to our episodes of "Nuggets of Knowledge." And listen. You know what? As a favor to us, you need to share this with people. Send this to people on Facebook or – you know – or otherwise. Takes a lot of effort to make these videos. If a lot of people are watching them, I'm gonna keep doing it. So if you go on our YouTube, leave a comment. Or if you go on our website – we have our video library. You can leave comments there, too. Give us some feedback if this is valuable or not, and we will keep it up. You can even ask for different topics, but I'm gonna kind of look at current events or things that happen in-clinic for inspiration.

All right. Doug Skarada. Let me go home; make some waffles for my sleepy kids. See ya!