Dropping a few pounds is just a matter of eating less and exercising more, right? Wrong. You'll shed more weight -- and reduce stress levels -- if you add these two steps to the formula: Chill out and turn in early. That's right. A study found that curbing stress and getting plenty of sleep can help you slim down.
Relax and Sleep to Lose Weight
Researchers put 432 obese adults on a standard eat-less/exercise-more weight-loss plan for 6 months. Although most folks lost weight, those with lower stress levels at the start of the study lost a lot more than their anxious counterparts did. Sleep also impacted the amount of weight lost. People who snoozed at least 6 -- but not more than 8 -- hours a night were more likely to achieve the study's pre-established goal of at least 10 pounds, compared to those who got less or more shut-eye. Study participants with the most stress and sleep difficulties were 50 percent less likely than the mellow, well-rested dieters to slim down and reach the study's 10-pound goal.