Thursday, September 3, 2009

Five Reasons To Get More Sleep

When it comes to your health, getting enough sleep is essential to your well being. The National Institute of Health estimates that nearly sixty million Americans have frequent insomnia and an estimated forty million have a chronic sleep disorder. Here are five reasons you should get more sleep.

1.)Cardiovascular Health: Sleep disorders have been linked to heart and circulatory conditions such as hypertension and irregular heart beats.

2.)Weight Gain / Metabolism: Sleep deprivation causes changes in the way our bodies process and store carbohydrates. It also affects hormone levels related to appetite.

3.)Immunity / Disease Prevention: Lack of sleep causes changes in the immune system decreasing the strength and activity of immune cells. Some research shows adequate sleep helps prevent cancer.

4.)Learning / Memory: Adequate sleep improves memory retention by improving the brain's ability to store new information into memory.

5.)Mood / Temperament: Lack of adequate sleep can cause irritability, moodiness, inability to concentrate, impatience and result in being too tired out to do things you would like to do.

So how much sleep is enough sleep. That answer can vary for everyone depending upon the quality of sleep but a general rule of thumb would be seven to eight hours. Some people function effectively on six hours. Perhaps because they go through the four phases of sleep effectively and thus have a higher quality of sleep in less time.

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Reference:
Harvard Health Publications
Improving Sleep: A Guide To A Good Nights Rest
WebMD Understanding Sleep Disorders

5 comments:

cube said...

Good advise. Must go take a nap now...

Brian, the old man said...

That's great information. I used to have great difficulty sleeping before I lost a lot of weight but now I'm sleeping well. These findings are similar to those in the Harvard Women's Health Watch article I referenced in my article Blurt: Sleep Tight at http://oldmanblurtsout.today.com/2009/07/14/blurt-sleep-tight/ They site six reasons that confirm the importance of sleep. Thanks, I always find your articles filled with excellent information.

artistryinfaux said...

Well I agree with Cube on the nap since this was one of those mornings where I woke up at 3..argggg....
I have just recently in the last couple of years been able to actually get 8 hours...my dad was the same way with usually only getting 6. Not sure what the change is for me but I know I feel so much better and I am more relaxed when I am able to get the full 8 hours.

harri pao said...

Thanks TC, ...for the information, actually in the last month, I've been got difficulty sleeps (just about 4 hours) But, now I know what the cause is. Try to be relaxed, then!

TC said...

Thanks for your comments everyone. I used to need 8 hrs but now can function well on 6 especially if I am working out. The flip side is if I am working out heavily I may need a couple days with an extra hour or two. One day a week with the extra 2 hrs seems to help. Going to bed earlier(before 10:30)helps quite a bit as well.