Meet Dr Michael J Breus, my new best friend;
“If you are sleep-deprived, meaning that you are not getting enough minutes of sleep or good quality sleep, your metabolism will not function properly,” explains Michael Breus, PhD, author of Beauty Sleep. “The more sleep-deprived you are, the higher your levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which increases your appetite. You are eating more, plus your metabolism is slower when you are sleep deprived,” says Breus.
I hate to stop the doctor whilst he’s on a roll however, I’d like to take a moment to make us shapely parents feel a little less guilty when we find ourselves devouring the Kinder bar we purchased as a treat for our little darlings. Obviously, lack of sleep also applies to you non-child folk too; goodness knows my social life used to have a serious impact on my resting hours. And after rocking up to bed at 2am on a week night, I certainly had no intention of starting my day with a Special K breakfast. But, when it comes to my life right now, the main cause of 4 hours or less sleep is all thanks to my baby boy. Oh, and the occasional night shift doesn’t help matters much either but that’s a whole other ball game. For all you fellow night shift workers, aka poor sods, check out my other post; Play time? No darling, it’s sleep time.
Rupert really likes to let me know when he’s teething. I’m pretty sure my neighbours are fully aware of it too. Sometimes it feels like he’s been teething since the day we met and it distresses me when some thoughtful parents point out that teething can last for several years with some children. Just what I wanted to hear, thanks for that. It goes without saying that I’m fully prepared to comfort and medicate my little man during these distressing toothy times, however when I’ve woken up for the 7th time in 2 hours, I find myself struggling to be as supportive and compassionate as I aim to be. Especially when I look at the clock and notice I’ve only got another 70 mins of precious sleep time before he will want to wake up properly and start the day. This brings me on to my other recent observation, why the hell do kids wake up at the same frigging time no matter how awful the night has been?! It makes no sense to me. Have a lie in guys; it will make you feel much less tearful and dramatic and will ultimately stop you from behaving like the devil incarnate until nap time.
So forgive me for not eating the superfood salad in my fridge Dr Gillian McKeith. It will probably pass its expiration date and go mouldy if I’m being completely honest. Some days you need the sugar rush to keep you going. I know a banana contains slow release energy but I’m after a quick hit that tastes good, so I’m opting for the bag of McCoys instead thanks.
Let’s revisit my new buddy, Dr Breus, for some final words of wisdom;
“On average we need 7.5 hours of quality sleep per night. If you are getting this already, another half hour will not help you lose 10 pounds, but if you are a five hour sleeper and start to sleep for seven hours a night, you will start dropping weight”
One day Breus, one day.
(If you are experiencing sleep problems visit Dr Breus’ website at The Sleep Doctor for helpful advice)