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Diet Preparaton -- The Impact of Sleep and Stress
When you have started a diet in the past, how much sincere and attentive focus did you give to preparing for your diet? Isn't it true that usually you are getting the food together a particular diet requires, buying yet another tread mill (or hauling out the old one covered in dust from the last diet), getting another gym membership, planning that last big blowout gluttonous meal you're going to eat because you are going to have to starve for the next eight weeks.
Take a look at most fad diets or weight loss programs, and you will find missing two very important components. These fad diets and online diet programs fail to give enough, if any, importance to an important key that could more than double your chances of losing weight and keeping it off.
What am I talking about? How getting a good night's sleep can make all the difference in your weight loss success.
Actually, we can place stress alongside sleep as the two are so very important to each other. If you are under a lot stress, most likely you aren't getting enough sleep. Lack of sleep can lead to more stress. Now try to take seriously any diet program when you have that kind of stress/sleeplessness cycle, and you are asking for failure.
Having counseled countless couples, singles, married, divorced and you name it people during nearly 20 years as a spiritual leader and guide, I am not suggesting that we don't have to deal with life's issues and challenges. Quite the contrary. I am suggesting that you deal with those issues by taking the necessary steps to take control of your daily patterns and habits which will lead to a healthy psychological and physical wellbeing.
In other words, if you are eating right, exercising regularly, and getting a good night's sleep each night, you will be better equipped emotionally and physcally to take on stress. Here are some thoughts on why sleep and stress are so important.
If you consistently deprive yourself of sleep it can lead to a state of sleep deprivation. Typically, everyone goes through periods of sleep deprivation in their life. Remember staying up all night, maybe more than one, when you were in finals week in college? Or if you have a child, you definitely have experienced, or are experiencing now, periods where you deprive your body of sleep.
But there is a great difference in intermittent times of going without sleep because we choose to and patterns of sleep deprivation brought on by illness or, most common, stress.
Be sure to look for my next article in this series which deals with what happens to the body when it doesn't get enough sleep. These articles will lead to a thourough understanding of why the body needs rest and relief from stress and I will show you concrete steps you can take to make sure you are getting the best night's sleep possible.
Mark A. Fuqua
With 3 earned degrees and more than 16 years of experience as spiritual leader, pastor, director of marketing and investment banker, Mark Fuqua brings to the discussion table a breadth and depth of unique experience coupled with academic acumen. He is Consultant and Chief Editor of Diet Basics, a website dedicated to healthy weight loss success.
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