I’ve only been discovering the many benefits of sleep within the last few years. I used to think the only downside of not sleeping enough was feeling tired. I’ve found it so interesting to learn that sleep is super essential to our health, mind and productivity in so many ways.
Some very good info can be found in the book, Sleep Smarter by Shawn Stevenson. Shawn says in his book, “The research is in, and it’s 100 percent conclusive: When you don’t sleep well, you get slower, less creative, and more stressed, and you underperform,” and “High-quality sleep fortifies your immune system, balances your hormones, boosts your metabolism, increases your physical energy, and improves the function of your brain.”
Sleep deprivation is now known to cause many serious negative consequences. According to the US Health and Human Services Department (HHS.gov blog article, “Why is Sleep Important?”), “Sleepiness resulting from insufficient sleep, irregular sleep schedules, or poor quality sleep is a cause of motor vehicle crashes, occupational errors with hazardous outcomes, and difficulty performing daily tasks.” Additionally, they say, “Sleep and wakefulness disorders affect an estimated 15-20 percent of US adults who are more likely to suffer from chronic disorders including depression, substance abuse, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, stroke, and all-cause mortality.”
Want to lose weight or avoid gaining weight? Make sure you’re getting enough sleep! While we are asleep, the body is able to repair our muscles and regulate our hormones. An article by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (“Why is Sleep Important?), states, “Sleep helps maintain a healthy balance of the hormones that make you feel hungry (ghrelin) or full (leptin). When you don’t get enough sleep, your level of ghrelin goes up and your level of leptin goes down. This makes you feel hungrier than when you’re well-rested. Sleep also affects how your body reacts to insulin, the hormone that controls your blood glucose (sugar) level. Sleep deficiency results in a higher than normal blood sugar level, which may increase your risk for diabetes.”
How much sleep is enough? Most experts agree that we should be getting between 7-9 hours of quality sleep per night. The actual amount will vary for each person. There are also 90 minute cycles of sleep to consider. It is recommended not to wake up within a 90 minute cycle. So, this would mean 6 hours, 7.5 hours and 9 hours would give you 4-6 90 minute cycles. Waking up at the 7.5 or 9 is preferable than 8 or 8.5. Shawn also talks about this in the Sleep Smarter book.
Do you get an average of 7-9 hours of high-quality sleep per night? If not, what areas of your life have you noticed are suffering due to sleep deficiency? Do you desire to get more sleep and be healthier and more productive? What obstacles do you face to get enough sleep?
I can help you with overcoming obstacles around getting enough sleep and help you create a plan to a healthier and more productive life with more sleep.
I’m a Life Coach, specializing in helping professionals feel rejuvenated and back in control of their lives through better sleep routines. ~ Rebekah Anderson
Click here to schedule a free 25-minute coaching session with me. I will help you get on track with your routines and your life.