Sufficient sleep is increasingly being recognized as an essential aspect of health promotion and chronic disease prevention. Studies, however, suggest that more Americans are getting an insufficient amount of sleep (many of us are sleeping less than six hours a night) and that 75% of the population experiences sleep difficulties at least a few nights per week.
In generally, a short-term bout of insomnia is nothing to worry about. The bigger concern is chronic sleep loss, which can contribute to health problems (e.g., weight gain, high blood pressure, and a decrease in the immune system’s power), and cause negative psychological effects (e.g., memory loss, mood swings, and depression).
Below are six reasons why you should get a good night’s sleep:
1. Learning and memory: Sleep helps the brain commit new information to memory through a process called memory consolidation. In studies, people who’d slept after learning a task did better on tests later.
2. Metabolism and weight: Chronic sleep deprivation may cause weight gain by affecting the way our bodies process and store carbohydrates, and by altering levels of hormones that affect our appetite.
3. Safety: Sleep debt contributes to a greater tendency to fall asleep during the daytime. These lapses may cause falls and mistakes such as medical errors, air traffic mishaps, and road accidents.
4. Mood: Sleep loss may result in irritability, impatience, inability to concentrate, and moodiness. Too little sleep can also leave you too tired to do the things you like to do.
5. Cardiovascular health: Serious sleep disorders have been linked to hypertension, increased stress hormone levels, and irregular heartbeat.
6. Disease: Sleep deprivation alters immune function, including the activity of the body’s killer cells. Keeping up with sleep may also help fight cancer.
Article provided by BODYbyDONAVON
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