Weight Loss Support - calorie reduction and sleep

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11-18-2007, 08:21 PM
Anyone else have trouble sleeping when calories are reduced? If I consume 1600 a day I can't lose but do sleep well. If I reduce to the 1200-1400 range at which I can lose I can't sleep at night.

Then it all seems to snowball because I get worn out and my body craves more calories. Then I start eating more and I stall.

Over the summer I did well but I have been stalled now since the first week of September.

I have tried upping my exercise to wear myself out so that I can sleep but it just seems to wind me up more.

11-18-2007, 08:37 PM
Hmm, well, I've never noticed this effect. I do know that not getting enough sleep does make it awfully hard to successfully lose weight, but my sleep problems always got better with clean eating and exercise, not worse.

What time of day are you exercising? Sometimes if I exercise too late, it is disasterous for my sleep - I get revved up and can't calm down for at least 4-5 hours after a workout, so you may want to time your workouts in the morning if you can.

Do other things change when you cut your calories that low? For example, do you fill up on coffee/tea/diet sodas with caffeine? I wonder if you are getting more caffeine on your low-cal days than on your higher cal days, without thinking about it. I drink a ton of tea when I'm trying to keep my calories down, and if that tea wasn't herbal, I can see it being a problem.

You might try moving your workouts earlier and keeping caffeine to a minimum and see if it helps.

11-18-2007, 09:01 PM
The green tea could be the culprit. I do drink much more of it when I am cutting calories. I do stop drinking tea at about 2:00 in the afternoon but maybe all that built up caffeine is staying in my system.

I think the other problem is that I am forced by my schedule to consume most of my daily calories by about 11am leaving not enough for the evening so I end up going to bed hungry.

11-19-2007, 01:50 AM
I don't know if it's typical. In my case, it's the contrary, I tend to sleep way better when my body is running low on fuel (but not too low, of course). Maybe it helps that I'm the kind of person who can't be bothered to get up at night to eat, even if she's ravenous.

Now, green tea could indeed be a culprit. I'm not sure either, but it's possible.

11-19-2007, 07:38 AM
Mermom, what kind of schedule has you not eating in the evening and going to bed hungry? That just has to be a problem... was it like this before you started trying to lose, or is this something new?

Tell us what you eat in a day and when you eat it... maybe there are some alternatives?


11-19-2007, 12:32 PM
Oftentimes, restlessness is a sign of not enough food, which is why women who starve themselves are antsy and insomniacs. And if you are going to bed hungry then that's definitely a problem too. Either raise the intake back to the original or eat before you sleep.

11-19-2007, 12:40 PM
try a small protein snack right before bed. A stick cheese works well for me. I do not sleep well too hungry.

Why do you have to eat so much before 11 am?

I would eliminate the caffeine entirely until you get this figured out. Even 9 am coffee can be detrimental to sleep if other sleep factors are involved. In general for insomniacs exercise should not be done in the late afternoon or evening or it can make it harder to sleep.

11-19-2007, 07:45 PM
Uhhh great to know Iīm not the one... it happens to me too, when I lower my calories I sleep horribly, itīs hard to fall asleep and I wake up all night long. Too bad I donīt know what to do to solve it, but now u know uīre not the only one (does that help at all?)
Ahhh I donīt drink any coffee or tea and just the same intake of diet coke..

11-20-2007, 09:48 PM
I seldom have caffeine so I believe it's my hungry tummy keeping me awake. I, too, sleep better when I consume more calories, unfortunately. So when I'm in losing mode, I eat an 8:00 pm snack of 1/2 c cottage cheese, 1/2 c blueberries and .2 oz of walnuts (protein, carb, good fat), and that helps.

11-20-2007, 11:10 PM
I am a high school teacher with the dreaded "first lunch". This means I have to have breakfast at 7:00 (oatmeal, 300 calories) a snack at my 9:45 break (usually pure protein 150-200 calories) and lunch (veg, protein, and some carb 350-400 calories) finished by 11 am. Then there is teaching all afternoon (enough to wind up anyone) then after school meetings and stuff. By the time I arrive home at 4:00 it is too early to have dinner but really sort of late for any kind of late snack. By this time in my day I have already consumed between 800-1000 calories.

Then I try to put dinner off as long as I can so I won't go to bed hungry. So dinner at around 5:30, which consumes the remainder of my alotted calories if I eat a 300-450 calorie meal.

On the weekends when I can spread out my meals and snacks I don't have the same sleeping problems and am not horribly hungry by 5pm.

11-21-2007, 01:06 AM
I would eat a snack at 4 and put dinner off a little later - I eat a snack WHILE cooking dinner every night. I am starving by 5 pm, but dh doesnt get home in time to have dinner until 6-6:30. If I try to skip that snack I inhale dinner and binge later. Better to eat when you are hungry

I'd try trimming a little off your oatmeal (my oatmeal is only 150 calories for a big bowl...so there should be room to spare - what are you adding? ) and adding a little protein to your breakfast...like a scrambled eggbeater or two...you can still bring breakfast in at 250-300

Make the a.m. snack smaller since lunch is coming soon - maybe 100 calories


pack a second snack ~ 150 calories and either eat it before you leave for home if you want it earlier (or in the car) or as soon as you get home

push dinner back another hour.

Or if you really like having dinner at 5:30, then save the second snack for a protein snack before bed.

But I think you should be able to trim something off the breakfast/am snack to save for an evening snack.

11-21-2007, 08:06 AM
U eat dinner quite early. Here we eat dinner around 9 pm so when I go to bed at 11 pm aprox Iīm not hungry but I sleep bad anyway.
These last days have been better, I guess my bodyīs just adjusting... hope it continues this way!

11-21-2007, 09:05 AM
Rafaella, your culture is different! Do you have siesta in Chile? My brother lived in Argentina for a few years and got very used to siesta in the afternoon and eating dinner late.

Mermom, I agree with ennay--a snack at 4 pm would be a good thing. You could put off dinner until 6 or later that way. I'd also trim breakfast a little, say, to 250 cals, and the morning snack to not more than 150. The lunch is OK since you don't get an afternoon break. But then you'd have some calories "extra" for the 4 pm snack, which because you went all afternoon, should probably be around 150-200.

By the way, do you have any exercise?


11-21-2007, 09:50 AM
Siesta? jajaj many people sleep a little siesta but I donīt. I live in Santiago and people donīt go home to eat lunch here, but in other places (almost every other city and town) people go home to eat lunch and sleep a "siesta".