Health benefits of a good sleep
Health benefits of a good sleep are probably not unknown to you. We all feel more fresh and less drowsy
when we get enough sleep. However, apart from these short-term benefits, getting on a regular sleep schedule
has many long-term health benefits. Both your body and mind benefit from a good
sleep. Here, we try to summarize some of the less obvious, but proven benefits of sleep for you.
While you sleep, your body gets a chance to repair some of the damage that is caused by
stress, ultraviolet rays, pollution, and other harmful exposures. For example, your body cells produce more protein
when you are sleeping. This extra protein serves as a building block to repair
some of the damage incurred during the day.
Studies suggest that people with insomnia or sleep apnea can get drastic improvement
in their blood pressure and inflammation with a proper treatment of their sleep disorder. Generally, it is
shown that, on average, people who sleep less than six hours per night have higher blood pressure and
risk of heart attack.
People who sleep better tend to be more responsiveness and creative. This can have a big impact on
your life. For instance, if you are an athlete, this means winning more often. If you are in school, this
might help you improve your grades. Moreover, studies have found a correlation between
lack of sleep and rate of accidents.
You probably did not expect this one to be on this list. But, it has been shown that people who sleep
less than 7 hours per night are more likely to be overweight. This is thought to be related to the
production of the hormones that affect appetite. As a matter of fact, lack of sleep can interfere with the production of
the hormones ghrelin and leptin which regulate appetite.
You probably already know that while asleep, your body accelerates the production of many chemicals. One
of these chemicals is serotonin which plays an important role in depression. It has been shown that people with
lower level of serotonin are more likely to suffer from depression. Getting the right amount of
sleep can drastically help prevent this.
While sleeping, you generally strengthen your memories and practice what
you learned during the day. In other words, while your body is resting in a more
relaxed state, your brain continues to work on perfecting the skills that you learn during the day. Your brain tries to make
a connection between the most recent events, memories, and feelings.
Inflammation is thought to be one of the main causes of deterioration of our bodies as we age. Furthermore,
lack of sleep can increase the level of hormones associated with stress. As show by many studies, these stress
hormones can raise inflammation levels; hence, accelerating the aging process.
There have been other studies that suggest, on average, people who take a healthy amount of sleep tend to live longer
compared to those who don't.
Sleep deficiency pushes your body into a state of higher stress. Your normal body functions will be put on a
high alert which increases the level of hormones associated with stress. This can also increase your blood
pressure. On a contrary note, even though you are lacking sleep, the production of stress hormones
makes it harder for you to fall asleep. Moreover, try to manage your stress by learning more about relaxation techniques.
It is shown that the people who work late shifts have a higher risk of colon and breast cancers.
Light exposure reduces the level of melatonin which is a hormone that makes us sleepy. Moreover, this
hormone protects us against cancer by suppressing the growth of tumours. People who are working
late have a higher exposure to light, and as a result, a lower level of melatonin
compared to others. Hence, try keeping your bedroom dark when sleeping.