Less Sleep May Increase Risk of Obesity

Less Sleep May Increase Risk of Obesity

A new study suggests that inadequate sleep or less than 7 hours of sleep every day may trigger an increase in your risk of eating and drinking more because you are less focused.

Secondary Eating

Researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham conducted a survey that found that the lack of sleep is directly associated with more time spent in secondary eating and drinking. The study implies that lack of sleep is a sure pathway to increased calorie intake, mostly in the form of beverages and foods with high-fat content. Consuming these calories increase your risk of obesity.

The association between short naps and weight risk is apparent, according to Gabriel S. Tajeu, a postdoctoral fellow at UAB’s Department of Epidemiology and lead researcher. Tajeu further adds that his team is looking into whether there’s a connection between the short sleep and the urge to eat processed foods. They also want to establish if daytime naps affect the craving for beverages other than water such as sugar-sweetened sodas while lazing around.

Details of the Study

For this study, Tajeu and his team analyzed data taken from 28,150 American adults from the ages 21-65 years. The participants were part of the American Time Use Survey (ATUS), and the study conducted between 2006 and 2008. The researchers sought to determine how much time the subjects spent on secondary eating and drinking with the amount of sleep being an independent variable.

The team used Estimated Multivariable Regression Models, a technique used to analyze multiple variables, including the participant’s demographic characteristic such as race, gender, and socio-economic characteristics. They also compared weekday versus weekend participation in ATUS.

This way, the researchers could establish the link between short sleep and eating and drinking behaviors accordingly.

At the end of the analysis, Tajeu and his team found participants who slept for more than 7 hours had lower rates of secondary eating compared to their counterparts who slept for less than 7 hours each day.

The Results

According to the researchers, the subjects who didn’t have enough sleep took part in secondary eating for an extra 8.7 minutes every day, which was in sharp contrast with other participants who had enough sleep. They also engaged in secondary feeding for another 28.6 minutes every 24 hours. During the weekends, they were more likely to spend 21.28 minutes in secondary eating. However, the team did not explain the science behind this behavior.

The results of this study were published in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

Tips to Sleep for the Doctor-recommended Eight Hours

You don’t have to be part of the statistics of secondary eating. All you need to do is to make some tweaks here and there to help you improve your sleeping pattern. These tips will help you get started.

Make your Bed Comfortable

Yes. The primary reason most people don’t fall asleep quickly is that their beds are way too uncomfortable. You can, however, make your sleeping place cozy by getting a good mattress. On top of that, consider adding a comforter. The biggest question, however, is – should I pick a polyester or cotton comforter?  A good one should be hypoallergenic, easy to clean and durable. Of course, you’re better off with something pleasing to the eyes to make your bedroom beautiful.

Lose Some Weight

You’re likely to lose sleep if you’re overweight. So, consider enrolling in your local gym to help you shed off the extra pounds. You can also opt for morning jogs. The long and short of it is that you have to keep your body moving to enable you to get some quality shut-eye later in the night.

Go to Bed at the Same Time Every day

Sure, you may have some late nights, but develop a habit of going to bed at the same time every day. The idea is to train your body and mind to get into a relaxation mode a couple of hours before sleep.

On top of that, you should avoid drinking things such as coffee or beer before going to bed. Also, make sure that you don’t your smartphone or laptop between the sheets.  Switch off your TV a few minutes before sleeping as well.


Causes and Remedies For Back Pains

Causes and Remedies For Back Pains

Back pain is a common problem across the world, and research shows that 80% of the population will experience it at a point in life. It is the leading cause of disability in the world which makes people helpless and also unable to engage in constructive work. It is also among the top 5 reasons why people visit the doctor often. In some cases, the pain is temporal while in other cases, and it becomes repetitive and never fades away. You may have experienced back pains at a point in your life. The following are some of the common causes of back pains

Straining the back muscles

If you strain your muscles more than they are used to, then you are at a high risk of suffering from back pains. One of the main causes of such strain is when you lift heavy weights improperly. It is very common with bodybuilders. It is thus always advisable to have an instructor guide you during weight lifting exercises. It also happens when you make an awkward or abrupt movement that involves the back muscles. Sometimes you may not be able to avoid such a movement because it is mainly out of impulse.

Poor posture

You are at risk of suffering from back pains if you spend many hours working behind a computer. The pains are also common among people who stand for many hours as it strains the back muscles. If you are among those people who drive for long without a break, then you are also at risk of suffering. Using your computer while straining your neck forward is also a recipe for back pains. Ensure that you uphold an upright posture when you are working and also while driving if you want to prevent back pains. Invest in a good workstation if you work from home and avoid working from the couch.

Structural Causes

The way your body is designed and some diseases as well can also be a source of your suffering. Arthritis is a common disease that is characterized by swelling. Some of the common areas that this disease affects include the hips, joints and the lower back muscles. There are also many disks that cushion every vertebra within the spine. There will always be pressure when such a disk ruptures and causes excess pressure on the respective nerves. Similar pain can also occur when such a disk bulges. Other causes of back pains include kidney problems and Osteoporosis.


There are different approaches when it comes to treating back pains based on the intensity and location of your pain. The symptoms for back pains also vary from one person to the other, and some people do not even note that they are suffering from back pains. You should visit a physician if you suspect that you are having back pains for the right diagnosis

Home treatment

There are several lifestyle changes that can help you fight back pains and protect you from suffering. The mattress in your bedroom can be the cause of your suffering as it does not provide a safe area for your body to rest. You can create a magnetized feeling that helps your body to regain its normal functioning through fighting inflammation and back pains when you use magnetized mattress pads. It even gets better when you use a similar comfortable pillow that makes your headrest well.

Medical treatment

If your pain is on the chronic level, then consulting a physician for medical attention might be your only relieve. Sometimes the pain may not respond to over-the-counter medications. Such medications do not treat your underlying condition but only suppresses the pain. The physician will advise on the necessary approach depending on your situation. One of the best approaches is through electrical stimulation that relieves the ailing muscles. The physician can also apply ice or heat depending on the source of your pain. Surgery is also an option when your pains are extreme.


There is various simple work out routines such as yoga and stretches that can help you fight back pains. However, you should ensure that such exercises are moderate to avoid hurting your muscles further. Cognitive behavioral therapy is also an option to fight this situation. You change your way of thinking and maintain a positive mindset which lowers your suffering. Acupuncture which traces its origin to China is also very effective in fighting such pains.  The therapist inserts needles at specific points on your body and stimulates your system to release its pain-relieving hormones. Massage from an expert can also lower your suffering as well.

Preventing and fighting back pains is not that hard if you understand the causes and how to remedy the situation. Ensure that you are conscious of your health because most of the causes are as a result of the lifestyle that you lead.

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