Does sleep affect your BMI?

Getting a good nights sleep is beneficail in many ways, it allows our body to naturally recover from physical activities that are performed, as well as helping regulate the hormones in our body. With this in mind, can the loss or gain of sleep affect the body mass index of a person.

According to a study that was performed by Shahrad Taheri, Ling Lin, Diane Austin, Terry Young, Emmanuel Mignot may point to that being a posibility. The experiment was performed to see if differences in the amount of sleep that a person had gotten affected the metabolism affecting hormones leptin, ghrelin, adiponectin, insulin, glucose. The study want conducted through the use of surveys that were mailed to 1024 participants. These participants were both male and female, and were origianlly examined for a inital baseline that would be measured agianst throughout the experiments. Individuals were required to complete sleep journals as well as to complete surveys that were sent to to the participants every 5 years, to track and monitor any changes that a participant may have had to the amount of sleep. The orginal hypothesis that was being tested was suggested that leptin and ghrelin would be affected by how much sleep or lack of sleep a participant would have, ultimately affect their body mass index. After the experiment was completed it was seen that there was a signifact response to the body mass index of a person compared to to the amount of sleep that they had gotten.


It was seen that individuals that had less than 7.5 hour of sleep produced fewer amounts of leptin than those that had  more than 7.5 hours of sleep( refer to chart A of Image). In the case of ghrelin production and sleep, there was a notciable increase in the hormone leptin that person had if they had a lower average of hours slept than those that a higher average of hours slept. With these two results, it was also seen that those participants that had lower averages of for hours of sleep obtained also had a higher BMI comprared to those that had a higher average of hours of sleep.


From the information from this study it could be seen that sleep does play a vital role, not only in the regulation of hormones in your body, but also the regulation of hormaones and can affect your BMI.

Pictures are found here


Taheri S, Lin L, Austin D, Young T, Mignot E (2004) Short Sleep Duration Is Associated with Reduced Leptin, Elevated Ghrelin, and Increased Body Mass Index. PLoS Med 1(3): e62. doi:10.1371/


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