The Sleep Diet

I’m on a diet. The Sleep Diet. Unlike most diets, however, this diet involves indulgence rather than deprivation.

Since January 1, I have been sleeping as much as I want. I go to bed early and I don’t get up until I wake up naturally. No more alarm clocks for me.

I haven’t slept less than 8 hours a night for five weeks now. Most nights I sleep 9 hours, and sometimes even 10. I feel rich, spoiled, decadent. I feel like I’ve won the lottery, or inherited a vast fortune. I go to bed at night greedily, hungrily. I sleep voraciously. I revel in the luxury of a vast, uninterrupted space of time between my fleecy microfiber sheets and comforter.

I’ve also lost 7½ pounds since January 1.

There’s science here. Research has shown that not enough sleep affects hormones that control our appetite by increasing gherlin (the hormone that makes us hungry) and decreasing leptin (the hormone that makes our hunger feel satisfied).

Science aside, I am of course feeling supremely rested. I feel less stressed and have more energy. I have more energy, for example, to plan, shop for and prepare nutritious, home-cooked meals. I feel less need to eat for comfort, or to try to create energy to make up for my fatigue. I’m experiencing a Better Life.

I love being on my Sleep Diet. I’d tell you more about it, but I gotta go now. It’s time for bed.

About Karen Caffrey

I'm a psychotherapist in private practice in West Hartford, Connecticut. I enjoy helping people become more fulfilled and resilient, so they can lead better lives.
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