Aside from your diet, the most important insulin sensitizing thing you can do is get a good night’s sleep. Studies spanning the globe show a universal trend of the negative impact of sleep deprivation on insulin sensitivity. It’s very clear that not getting enough good quality sleep will disrupt your body’s glucose-insulin response. During your slumber the body rebuilds its receptors for vital hormones like insulin, androgens, and corticosteroids.
Unfortunately, we don’t tend to prioritize sleep at all. In fact, we tend to the opposite. We try to find ways to sleep less and be awake more. Coffee is the largest world-traded commodity. Now add to that all the caffeinated beverages and stimulants used every week. Most people use drugs and supplements to put themselves in a hyper-awake state, and often have low quantity and low quality of sleep. 45% of people claim to have poor sleep, and from what I have seen from athletes, the percentage is even higher.
Some might thinking 7-9 hours of sleep per night makes you lazy. There are misconceptions regarding burning more calories for time awake. The difference per hour compared to sleep averaged about 17 kcal. However not sleeping enough increases risk of increased hunger and food intake, as well as reduction in overall physical activity from fatigue which leads to then lower kcal expenditure during the hours you are awake. According to the latest statistics, insomnia, the most common sleep disorder, costs the American economy over $60 billion in lost productivity.