The Power of Sleep: What You Didn’t Know
Sleep is a powerful tool that our body desperately needs for replenishing and restoring our bodies and minds. Often we find ourselves neglecting sleep in the busyness of our lives. Don’t underestimate the power of sleep or the lack of sleep. Every functioning part of our bodies depends on that amount, and more importantly, the quality, of our sleep. Keep reading for more what you didn’t know about the power of sleep.
What Your Body Does During Sleep
There are five stages of sleep, each of which plays a very important role in the process. Stages 1 through 4 are all Non-Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep stages. Starting in a light sleep and slowly drifting into a heavier sleep, stage four is when our body rejuvenates and restores itself in all physical areas. This includes the restoring of muscles and tissues, increases growth and development, aids your immune system’s function, and creates energy for the next day. Stage five, the only stage of REM, is when your brain replenishes itself and stores all of the day’s information. Your brain stimulates and creates brain waves, producing activity.
What Happens When You Don’t Sleep
Because our bodies require sleep to accomplish rejuvenation, when we don’t sleep enough it begins to affect your body and minds performance. If your mind is foggy and you’re experiencing reduced concentration, impaired judgment, or forgetfulness then you might need more sleep. If your immune system is down and you’re getting sick often, you probably need a higher quality of sleep. Are you struggling with your weight, unhappy, or are your workouts feeling too difficult? Sleep affects all of these areas; therefore, if you’re not sleeping enough or if your quality of sleep is down, these can be signs you need to change your sleep habits.
How To Get High-Quality Sleep
These days, people are walking around chronically sleep deprived, without even knowing it. If you are routinely getting less than seven hours of sleep a night, you are not sleeping enough. Some people don’t sleep enough simply because they have a hard time sleeping, others don’t sleep enough because they’re dangerously stressed or because they are staying up late on their phones or watching television. Whatever the reason, bad sleep habits will turn into your worst nightmare. Stop them in their tracks now and start doing these things instead:
- Create a sleep schedule for bedtime and wake up time (even on weekends)
- Add a relaxing bedtime ritual to your nighttime routine
- Avoid naps
- Steer clear of alcohol and caffeine prior to 2 pm
- Exercise daily
- Invest in a comfortable mattress and pillows
- Turn off electronics
- Use your bed only for sleep
Certain foods can negatively impact your sleep patterns. The most apparent being caffeine. Caffeine stimulates your body and will keep you up all night. Alcohol, often taken as a nightcap, relaxes the body at first, but can cause your body to wake up in the middle of the night with no intention of falling back asleep. When you wake up in the morning, fuel your body with a hearty breakfast and keep the nutrients coming all day long.
April 12, 2018 11:05 am
Categories: Family Health