Getting Enough Sleep is More Beneficial than You Think
How much is a good nights sleep worth? 😴
When talking about healthy lifestyle changes to make, most people understand the importance of exercising regularly and eating a well-balanced meal. One aspect of overall health that sometimes gets overlooked is good quality sleep.
On average, people need 7 to 8 hours of good quality sleep every day on a regular schedule to maintain and even improve optimal functioning. Teens and other youngsters require even more time. There are several benefits to getting good quality sleep that you may have never known.
It can help you maintain a healthy weight
Getting enough sleep is important to maintain a healthy weight as good quality sleep helps in regulation of the hormones that control appetite. Ghrelin is responsible for boosting appetite while leptin lets you know when you’re full. Without adequate sleep, your body produces more ghrelin and lesser leptin, thereby causing you to eat more. The right amount of sleep will help you take in the appropriate quantity of calories your body needs through proper regulation of the hormones, ghrelin and leptin.
It improves immune responses
Your body gets the chance to rest and recover when you sleep and this is true even for its immune system which is responsible for fighting off antigens and offering protection from diseases. With proper sleep, your immune cells as well as proteins will get the required rest so that they can do their job properly. This allows them to respond quickly to antigens and protect you from various infections/diseases.
You’ll show higher athletic performance
Sleep will improve your athletic performance by giving your body the much needed rest to repair itself. Getting enough sleep also means that you’ll have more energy, improved mental functioning, better performance intensity and coordination. You can also increase your speed reduced reaction times when you’re well rested.
It improves brain functioning
Good quality sleep is necessary to improve several brain functions like memory, attention, learning, and concentration. While our bodies may be at rest, our minds are not. The process of consolidation takes place as we sleep, allowing us to form connections of events and such processing can improve brain functioning, making us more productive in our daily tasks.
It lowers the risk of heart disease and diabetes
Good quality sleep will give your body some much needed rest by lowering your blood pressure and regulating glucose levels in the body. Both these functions are crucial to maintain health. Lower blood pressure reduces the risk of having a stroke or developing heart disease while regulation of glucose offers protection from developing type 2 diabetes.
It contributes to emotional and social intelligence
People are likely to be less cranky when they’re well rested. Several studies point to the link between quality of sleep and the emotional and social intelligence of people. Lack of sleep was shown to negatively impact people’s ability to empathize with the expressions and emotions of others. Getting adequate sleep has been found to lead to higher emotional empathy and better emotional and social intelligence.
It reduces inflammation in the body
Sleep helps in reducing inflammation in the body and can serve as a protective factor against stressors. Reduced inflammation reduces the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and several other compromised health conditions.
It can improve your mood
Getting high quality sleep is crucial to being in a good mood and having high energy levels throughout the day. Lack of proper sleep can often trigger several mood related disorders and even lead to depression among individuals. Quality sleep affects the body’s serotonin levels and this is very important for people suffering from depression.
Lack of sleep can also result in other mental health issues, and in extreme cases, lead to suicidal ideations among people. Good quality sleep can serve as a protective factor in such cases, improving mood and offering protection from several mental health disorders.