This excerpt is taken from Chapter 4: The Call to Adventure.
Now is not the time to get sensitive, but we’re about to point the finger at you.
If you’re like most guys who struggle with their weight or simply have difficulty looking the way you want, odds are, you have an eating problem. And it’s not necessarily that you eat the wrong foods—it’s that you eat too much. And why do you eat too much? Well, it’s because you’re always too damn hungry. Whether you wake up needing food, scavenge for snacks at work, or come home famished, your stomach seems to be in perpetual starvation mode.
And that’s because it is.
Recent research has found out one of the main reasons why you’re always hungry, and it has nothing to do with what you’re eating. The problem is how you’re sleeping. Research published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that a lack of sleep impacts your brain in a way that pushes you toward a “see food” diet, which explains why you always want to eat.
Just how bad is it? Only one night of insufficient sleep (fewer than six hours) triggers an area in your brain that is involved with your need to eat. Unfortunately, this is just the tip of the iceberg. A lack of sleep also increases ghrelin, a hormone that increases appetite, while decreasing leptin, the hormone that keeps you feeling full. This is what allows you to keep on eating. . . and eating. . . and eating. . . even as you put more energy (food) into your body.
It’s mind control, and you have no solution other than to get more rest. Or you’ll be forced into a world where you desire more food when you don’t need it. Focus on getting at least six hours of sleep. Make it a priority as part of your program, and you’ll quickly find that your hunger pangs will subside after each meal.
John Rmaniello and Adam Bornstein are the authors of Man 2.0: Engineering the Alpha, available from HarperOne.