There are several myths pertaining to snoring. For instance, people believe that snoring is normal. Some people believe only old people snore. But the biggest myth that people fall for is that obesity leads to snoring. Well, there are a lot of speculations over whether obesity leads to snoring or not.
Actually, it is true. Weight gain is one of the factors that contribute to the risk of snoring. It is interchangeable. In other words, gaining weight can lead to snoring and vice-versa.
What a solid fact is that prolonged and loud snoring due to excessive weight is an open invitation to other sleep breathing disorders such as sleep apnea. Don’t believe me? Then this might help.
According to a publication in the American College of Chest Physicians, “The prevalence of Obstructive Sleep Apnea in obese or severely obese patients is nearly twice that of normal-weight adults.”
How extra weight leads to snoring?
Fat near the neck compresses the upper way directly
When you lie down, the fat around your neck causes direct compression of the upper way leading to snoring.
Many people tend to ignore neck size with snoring but it certainly plays a role. Doctors often ask the neck size to assess the risk of sleep apnea. A neck size over 16 inches is considered at a higher risk of sleep apnea.
Fat near the midriff and chest compresses the upper way indirectly
Not only the fat around the neck affects snoring but midriff and chest fat also contribute. It’s not only about neck fat. Central obesity worsens snoring and sleep apnea.
Fat in your belly pushes up the diaphragm and the midriff fat compresses the ribcage. Hence, the capacity of your lungs decreases. Now that your lung capacity decreases, there is less airflow inside the lungs that makes it difficult to breathe.
Also Read: Myth or Fact: Is Snoring Bad for My Health?
How snoring leads to weight gain?
The explanation is quite simple. When you snore at night, you don’t sleep well. This makes you lethargic and sleep-deprived.
Now sleep deprivation changes our lifestyle as well as eating habits. For instance, whenever you feel tired at work, you tend to drink sugary drinks to keep yourself awake. Thus, it increases your weight.
We are often unable to catch up on our sleep whenever we feel tired. So instead we recharge ourselves by eating foods, especially those that have a large amount of sugar.
People who snore and their partners also lose sleep. So they are more prone to consuming carbohydrate-rich foods and ultimately leading to weight gain.
The snoring-obesity cycle-
This is a vicious cycle in which snoring loudly interferes with a good night’s sleep and feeling lethargic, which in turn is fuelled by overeating and under-exercising.
How to break through the cycle?
To break the obesity-snoring cycle, you need to opt for weight loss techniques, make an idea sleeping pattern and practice some snoring remedies-
Techniques to lose weight
There’s no shortcut to losing weight. Different tips work differently for everybody. You can use a combination of the following to reach your optimum weight-
- Eat a heavy breakfast and a light dinner
- Stop eating those empty calories at once
- Take a walk if you had a heavy dinner
- Break your meals into smaller ones
- Slow down the digestion process
Practice some snoring remedies
Depending on the nature of the snoring, there are certain remedies that can be used by people-
- A mouthpiece can help to drop your jaw forward when you are asleep.
- Practice position therapy that is changing your position, from specialized pillows and vibrating devices.
- When you practice various mouth and throat exercises, you can notice a massive improvement.
An ideal sleeping pattern
Prepare your mind and body to sleep using these helpful tips-
- Sleep at a fixed time.
- Make sure to sleep for 7-8 hrs.
- Sleep in a dark room.
- Declutter the mind by reading a book.
- Don’t drink alcohol or caffeine.
- Avoid napping for long hours.
- Take a shower before bed.
- Don’t try to sleep forcefully.
There is a vicious cycle of obesity and snoring. One affects the other. It is really difficult to break free from. There are various remedies that can help you lose weight and decrease the risk of sleep apnea. But it is still better to consult with an E.N.T specialist to check for any other condition that is causing you to snore.
Also Read: Effective Yoga Poses To Get Rid Of Snoring