Ever wonder why the body needs to rest for at least 8 hours every night? How is a good night sleep significant to your health and well-being? A good night’s sleep does more than just banish dark circles or improve mood, it may very well lengthen your lifespan. In today’s post, we are listing down ways sleeping affects your health and wellbeing:
Boosts Mental Health
A good night’s sleep is a proven brain booster. Although the body is at rest, the brain is most active at night. During this time, the brain is not only fully awake, it’s also processing and consolidating information and learning something new at the same time. So by the time you wake up, you perform a specific activity better!
Apart from boosting mental health, sleeping also promotes creativity. When you sleep, the brain reorganizes and restructures certain thoughts and actions and this manifests to spurs of creativity when you are awake. Researchers at Harvard University and Boston College conclude that a good night’s sleep is instrumental to the creative process.
Improves the Quality of Your Life
It’s no secret that satisfying sleep improves the quality of life but how? The body goes through hundreds of reparative processes while you sleep. Dead or damaged cells are replaced with new ones. The skin sheds dead skin cells. Damaged muscles, tendons, and ligaments are repaired. By the time you wake up from a satisfying sleep, you feel like a new person, which is not far from the truth.
Even better, sleep deprivation is associated with a shorter lifespan. A 2010 study found that deaths are common among sleep-deprived women aged 50 to 79. Those who slept less than five hours are more likely to die early, according to the study.
Inflammation is one of the root causes of cardiovascular diseases, premature aging and chronic ailments. Research shows that people who get less than six hours of sleep every night have higher blood levels of inflammatory proteins. These proteins are linked to various inflammatory diseases including stroke, arthritis, diabetes and heart disease.
In a separate study, researchers found that sleep-deprived people have more reactive proteins in the body than those who are not sleep deprived. In addition, those who suffer from sleep apnea, insomnia, and other sleep-related ailments have more c-reactive proteins than average people.
Reduces the Risk of Obesity
Yes, sleep deprivation can also affect the waistline. One study found that teens that don’t get enough sleep are more likely to become obese in the future. Sleep helps restore the balance of hormones in the body. These hormones include hunger hormone ghrelin and satiety hormone leptin.
When you don’t get enough sleep, the body releases more ghrelin in the system to compensate. This triggers periodic hunger pangs and intense cravings. Eventually, you will consume more food than you normally would. Studies show that sleep deprived individuals consume 300 more calories during the day than people who got enough sleep the night before.
When the body has enough time to repair itself, it becomes impervious to bacterial and viral infections. When you don’t get enough sleep, the body’s immunity response is affected. This makes you more susceptible to common colds, cough, and flu.