Former Dallas Cowboys Center Derek Kennard knew he needed to lose weight. He just wasn’t sure how to do it. He tried dieting, exercise, and more, but he just couldn’t lose the weight. Then he began sleep apnea treatment with an oral appliance, and found the weight was suddenly falling away. He eventually lost 160 pounds.

You may have been told that obesity can contribute to sleep apnea. You may even have been advised by your doctor that you should lose weight for this reason. However, you may not know that sleep apnea can make it hard for you to lose weight.

How Sleep Apnea Affects Your Weight

Sleep apnea affects more than just your ability to get a good night’s sleep. In response to the episodes of decreased/cut off airflow, your body undergoes a number of metabolic disruptions. This can contribute to many different effects, such as high blood pressure and coronary artery disease. It also disrupts the way your body utilizes energy.

Numerous studies have shown that sleep apnea disrupts your hormone balance, including hormones related to your body’s decision to store or use energy. Your body may be acting on sleep-apnea influenced hormonal imbalance and storing up excess energy, even though you are cutting back on food and increasing your exercise.

This means that although you may see modest gains from reduced calories and increased activity, your body will never trip over into the increased metabolic rate that is desirable for rapid weight loss.

Maybe You’re Targeting the Wrong Cause

If you’re trying to lose weight to try to combat sleep apnea, maybe you’re going at it all wrong. Perhaps it’s not your obesity that’s causing your sleep apnea, but the other way around. This means that you might not be able to achieve your weight loss goals if you don’t also incorporate sleep apnea treatment into your daily regimen.

At the Advanced Dental Sleep Treatment Center, we recommend a combined approach that includes both lifestyle modification and more direct sleep apnea treatment to achieve all your goals, including weight loss and achieving quality, restful sleep.

To learn more about the best way to approach your sleep apnea and weight loss goals, please contact the Advanced Dental Sleep Treatment Center in Omaha, Nebraska today.