Diet and Exercise: What’s the Missing Piece Towards a Healthier You?

You might know a person or a friend who frequently goes to the gym, has a strict diet, but never seems to shed a pound or two. When this is the case, that person usually gives up and ends up gaining weight instead of losing. They end up doing more damage to themselves rather than doing good.


Some people might think that they have it all figured out and conclude that they’re just not meant to be healthy or they must do something more drastic to achieve fitness. The truth is, what these people fail to figure out is the third and last missing piece of the puzzle. The three pieces of this puzzle are diet, exercise, and sleep.

Most probably, your friend is doing too much work in the gym and doing too much dieting without getting enough sleep. When this routine becomes a norm in their system, it immediately begins to show the harmful effects rather than the expected results.

Instead of losing weight, people tend to gain more. Instead of suppressing their appetite, they end up being more voracious than before.

What Happens to Your Diet if You Don’t Get Enough Sleep?

Even if a person does his or her best when it comes to diet and exercise, without sleep, it’s not possible to attain an overall healthy well-being. Here is a more detailed description of what’s happening inside the body without it.

Without sleep, the body starts to crave for food. Two hormones that control hunger are Leptin and Ghrelin. Ghrelin stimulates hunger while Leptin makes your stomach feel empty. When there is an abundance of these hormones, your body increases the fat that you store instead of burning it up more.

A lack of sleep not only does make you more hungry, but it pushes you to eat more unhealthy food. Being sleep deprived is essentially the same as being drunk, in a sense that the body loses complex decision-making.

Lack of Sleep Ruins the Effects of a Good Workout

Not getting enough sleep not only bothers your dieting routines but your workouts as well. Regardless of whether you’re a gym rat or just a weekend warrior, the time you spend in the gym will be all for nothing.

Poor sleep results in the body producing cortisol, a stress hormone which slows down the production of growth hormones. Sleep is the phase where the body produces a lot of hormones that enable it to recover from exercise.

Growth hormone has effects that allow the body regenerate from “microscopic” muscle tears as a result of exercise or physical activity. If left unchecked for a long time, these tiny muscle tears lead to more serious injuries such as torn muscles, tendons, ligaments, etc.

Getting the Right Amount of Sleep

When a person gets the right amount of sleep which is around 7-9 hours for adults, the body retains a balance in functioning and wellness. Pair it up with proper diet and exercise, and you’re well on your way to fitness.


A lot of people might be doing the right exercises, or they might be eating healthy, but the fact remains: some of them don’t get the right of amount of sleep. When there is a disruption in the trio of diet, exercise, and sleep, chances are the body regresses into the more adverse effects rather than the intended outcomes.

This unhealthy practice then becomes much worse especially if the routine is becoming a norm for the person. Instead of suppressing appetites, a person becomes more hungry, and instead of building muscle, the body begins to eat at it, causing muscle atrophy.

Balance in the trio of wellness is the right way to go to a more meaningful reward for hard work and a more noticeable result as well.

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Zachary McGavin

Zachary McGavin is a writer and a blogger who enjoys writing about health, sleep, and lifestyle. He often browses sites like Beds Online as reliable references. When not writing, Zach enjoys going to the gym.  

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