6 Good Reasons To Catch Those ZZZ’s
Sleep is vital to the overall well–being of all aspects of our bodies (both mental and physical). But as we try to balance commitments to family, friends, and work we often end up sacrificing rest and necessary sleep. Lack of sleep, whether for just one night or on a recurring basis can have detrimental effects on our health and ability to effectively cope with everyday situations.
As we sleep we cycle through periods of deep sleep and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep (or dreaming), with the REM portion increasing as we sleep longer. Enjoying the maximum restorative benefits of sleep requires getting 4 -5 sets of these sleep cycles per night.
Benefits Of Sleep
- Adequate sleep makes vaccines work more efficiently. Studies show that a person who gets sufficient sleep and receives the flu vaccine develop better resilience to the illness than those who are sleep deprived.
- Sleep affects the general quality of life, helping to ward off various adverse conditions. It reduces stress levels and fosters better control of blood pressure, boosting cardiovascular health. A good night’s sleep decreases anxiety since it provides more emotional stability. Conversely, a consistent lack of sufficient sleep can contribute to depression.
- Sleep helps to limit inflammation linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, and premature aging. Higher levels of inflammatory proteins are registered in the blood of persons who get less than six hours of sleep a night.
- As you sleep you strengthen memories and “practice” skills (both physical and mental) learnt while you were awake. Studies show college students who didn’t get enough sleep had worse grades than those who did. In similar studies, athletes who get sufficient sleep displayed increased stamina and less daytime fatigue.
- Avoid accidents. Sleeplessness affects reaction time and decision making, and insufficient sleep for just one night can be as detrimental to your driving ability as having an alcoholic drink. Records show that in crashes due to the driver’s performance, being tired accounts for the highest number of fatal single-car run-off-the-road accidents.
- Sleep and metabolism are controlled by the same areas of the brain and the hormones in the blood that drive appetite increase with sleepiness. Therefore, dieters who are sleep deprived feel hungrier than those who are well rested, and they tend to lose less fat.
Sufficient (good) sleep directly correlates with improved health. A good night’s sleep on a regular basis can help to ensure that you get the most out of every day.
Related Article: Acupuncture for Restful Sleep