The Importance of Sleep for Your Physical and Mental State
The two factors most commonly associated with physical health are diet and exercise, but a good night sleep is just as important. Between 7 and 9 hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep is fundamental to your wellbeing. With that said, what are the effects on your physical and mental state if we consistently don’t have good quality sleep?
Poor sleep increases the chance of weight gain
There are strong links between short sleep duration & weight gain. In fact, adults with consistently shorter sleep duration are 55% more likely to become overweight. The link between weight gain & sleep is through many factors including hormones & motivation to exercise. If losing weight is a priority, start with a quality night sleep.
Poor sleep impairs your ability to think clearly
Sleep deprivation can hinder your brain in a number of ways, including slowing reaction times, and hampering judgment. Experts at the American Academy of Sleep Medicine Sleep found that sleep loss is quite disruptive to the ventromedial prefrontal cortex of the brain which handles the assessment of risk & fear.
Poor sleep increases the risk of heart disease & stroke
This one can seem a little far-fetched at first, but it’s true. The National Sleep Foundation reports that those with regularly shorter sleeps have an increased risk of heart disease & stroke. Essentially, a lack of sleep affects your heart rate. Sleeping relaxes our pulse & breathing, and a lack of sleep doesn’t give our body the chance to unwind and relax the way it was designed to.
Sleep improves your immune function
Lack of sleep can suppress the full potential of your immune function. Have you ever noticed that a series of bad night’s sleep result in a cold or flu? Your body isn’t as prepared to fight what it can suppress at full function. A number of studies have shown our T-cells decrease if we are sleep deprived. Your T-cells are a type of white blood cell that is very important to your immune system. Tim, Founder of Hugo Sleep, states; “clients often approach us once they notice a decline in their health after a continued period of poor sleep quality”.
Insomnia & mental illness linked
Harvard Health Publishing report that issues with healthy sleep habits increases the risk of being vulnerable to certain mental health conditions. Handling sleep issues may reduce side effects of mental health problems. These types of mental health conditions can include depression & anxiety.
Good sleepers typically eat less calories
Studies have shown a strong correlation between poor sleep & a larger appetite. A poor night sleep hampers the normal balance of many hormones, including ghrelin, otherwise known as the hunger hormone. When your body is functioning normally, this hormone is released on an off as required, but sleep deprivation can alter your body’s correct levels on ghrelin.
If prioritising a healthy night sleep isn’t currently important to you, we hope the above information will help you to understand how fundamental a healthy sleep routine is to your physical and mental state.