Not being able to sleep when you’re hungry is the worst. Many of you want to lose fat, but your hunger prevents you from sleeping.

To make matters worse, you want to eat to help you fall asleep, knowing full well that your sleep quality will be further disrupted if you snack before getting some zzzz’s.

But do you know why this is?

Well, if you did, you might take more preventive steps to ensure that you aren’t too hungry before bed.

This might mean having to eat a little later or not lower your calories too much.

Why You Can’t Sleep When You’re Hungry

sleep hungry

The short answer is cortisol — the stress hormone.

You might not necessarily be stressed, but cortisol is a perfectly natural hormone to be released when you feel hungry.

Cortisol is the hormone that is also released first thing in the morning to help you feel awake and alert.

The purpose of cortisol is to help you survive during scarcity, war, or famine in pre-industrial times.

But, since we live in a time of abundance, this hormone can be quite problematic when pursuing fat loss or fitness goals.

Cortisol makes you hungry, leeches off muscle mass through a process called gluconeogenesis to produce energy, while sparing fat tissue as a backup energy store — and it makes you crave JUNK FOOD!

If you need help with improving your sleep hygiene, we recommend you to check out this course.

Sleep is crucially important to fat loss. If your hunger is preventing you from getting some proper kip then you should address your diet so that you don’t struggle to fall asleep.

And you shouldn’t allow severe hunger pangs to prevent you from getting adequate rest.

Last night, I had to eat a small block of feta cheese to quell my appetite as I was in a massive calorie deficit.

Here’s What to Do About it

sleep and testosterone

First off, don’t be foolish — your calorie deficit shouldn’t be so high as to keep you up at night.

Take a step back and choose a calorie deficit of 300-500 per day to lose fat sustainably.

Second, try eating your last meal a little later in the day.

Not so late as to ruin your sleep quality, but not so early that you’re raiding the fridge past midnight.

Third, there are small snacks that won’t disrupt your sleep as much or significantly raise your daily calories.

You can try to eat lean poultry like chicken or turkey, eat low-fat hard cheese, and even try a glass of warm milk like an infant to help you sleep.

Just remember, if you’re starving before bed, your body is telling you that you are WELL under your calories for the day.

A small snack to alleviate the sleeplessness will not undo your day’s work.

Of course, you will need a modicum of common sense. A small snack doesn’t mean eating a PB&J or something smothered in melted cheese that will ruin both your diet and sleep.

Do you need help with losing fat? We have a complete guide to fat loss here.

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