How Many Calories Do You Burn When You Sleep?

My first TED Talk was out this week and I’m really excited. If you haven’t had a chance to watch it yet, take a look this morning. It will help you understand how to do everything better based on hormonal timing. It was really fun to be able to do a TED Talk. I’ve always enjoyed watching them, so being a part of the program was a great honor.

If you know someone who’ll enjoy my talk, please share it with them. I’ll really appreciate it.

As we move into spring, daylight lasts longer, and the days get warmer.  This means people regularly ask me what to drink before bed when it’s hotter outside because my recommendation for a nighttime beverage is Guava Leaf Tea. Despite the change in temperature, my answer is still Guava Leaf Tea. I understand those same people don’t want something hot before bed (I’m from the South and forget iced tea isn’t a staple for everyone) but here’s the thing, Guava Leaf Tea is great on ice. Simply brew it as usual, let it cool a bit and pour it over ice. Trust me, it takes great, you’ll sleep better and start your night more hydrated.

Question of the week: How many calories do you burn in your sleep?

Most people seem to think that when they go to sleep, they put the car (aka their body) in PARK and all the energy expenditure stops. Nothing could be further from the truth.

When we look at one measure of energy consumption like glucose, we know that the brain is HIGHLY active, as it is for example in REM sleep where it works on memory consolidation and dreams. It is also active in stages 3 & 4 of sleep where all the cellular repair is happening.

In a lighthearted article I was reading on AOL they correctly identified that it will depend upon several factors: body weight, age, time you are asleep, and body temperature.

Cathy Posey, RD, a blogger and nutrition coach offered a simple way to approximate how many calories you burn in your sleep: “On average, people burn about .42 calories an hour per pound of body weight while they sleep,” she says.

So according to her formula:

My weight  x  0.42  x hours = calories burned

For example:  I weigh 165lbs x 0.42 = 69.3 cal/hour  x 6.5 hours = 450.45 cal/ night

So what does that equal? About 30-45 min of exercise, or a muffin!

Just do yourself a favor and Don’t skip exercise because you think you are burning enough calories in your sleep. Exercise has many different functions that are helpful for sleep. And, don’t forget, it is ok to do your workout before bed.

So what can you do to help increase weight loss while sleeping? Sleep Naked! You have heard me say it before but cooler temperatures will help boost metabolism. If you or someone you sleep with sleeps hot, consider this method for cooling your bed.

Another very interesting article I read was recently published looking at whether or not Vitamin D could be a new solution for restlessness at night?

In a 2018 study* done at the Sleep Medicine and Research Center, at King Abdulaziz University Hospital, researchers looked at 200 people, 78 of whom had restless legs syndrome, and there were 122 controls. They measured Vit D levels ( cut off was <50 nmol/L or > 50 nmol/L) in all participants. It turned out that 76% of the patients with diagnosed RLS (restless leg syndrome) were Vitamin D deficient, compared to 42% of controls. After adjusting for all other variables, it was determined that those who are diagnosed with RLS appear to be Vitamin D deficient.

While the study did not say that Vitamin D deficiency caused RLS, it may be giving us all a hint about what to include in our daily regimen. If you remember I have written about Vitamin D and sleep previously. You can find that article here. Personally, I take 5000 IU each day of D3, and I notice when I don’t!

Before I go, here is an article I was included in this week that you may enjoy.

How Taking CBN Oil Before Bed For A Month Affected My Sleep – Bustle

Sweet Dreams,
Dr. Breus

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Michael Breus, Ph.D - The Sleep Doctor is a Diplomate of the American Board of Sleep Medicine and a Fellow of The American Academy of Sleep Medicine and one of only 168 psychologists to pass the Sleep Medical Specialty Board without going to medical school. Dr. Breus is a sought after lecturer and his knowledge is shared daily in major national media worldwide including Today, Dr. Oz, Oprah, and for fourteen years as the sleep expert on WebMD. Dr. Breus is the bestselling author of The Power of When, The Sleep Doctor’s Diet Plan and Good Night!