(Natural News) Chronic stress and lack of sleep could wreak havoc on the metabolism and prompt the body to gain more weight, according to Dr. Michael Mosley, inventor of the revolutionary 5:2 diet. The expert and his colleague, diabetes expert Dr. Eleanor Scott of Leeds University in the U.K., enrolled 20 volunteers to a sleep deprivation experiment as part of their research.
The volunteers were subjected to a sleep deprivation simulation where they had to go to bed three hours later than usual for two nights. The participants were then allowed to sleep for as long as they liked for another two nights. The researchers examined the participants' eating habits during both simulations. The findings revealed that certain volunteers felt surprisingly hungry after enduring two sleepless nights. One participant, in particular, ate 10 custard cream biscuits for breakfast to compensate for the lack of sleep.
"Research has shown that chronic stress leads to increased hunger, comfort eating, self-loathing and disrupted sleep. Sleep and stress are closely linked: being stressed leads to problems sleeping, and problems sleeping make your stress levels soar," the researchers concluded.
The findings were presented at the BBC Two's Trust Me, I'm a Doctor program.
More proof that chronic stress leads to significant weight gain
A study published in February last year demonstrated that chronic stress might significantly raise the odds of excess weight. The researchers examined hair samples of more than 2,500 men and women aged 54 years and older to evaluate their cortisol levels. The experts explained that cortisol served as a marker of chronic stress. The researchers found that volunteers who had high-stress levels tended to be heavier, had a larger waist size, and had a higher body mass index (BMI). The scientists discussed that the higher BMI indicated greater fat deposit compared with muscle. (Related: Stress – The modern poison that is making us fat, bald, crazy and extremely unhealthy.)