We all know that getting enough sleep is important, but many of us don’t know why or how sleep is related to our overall health, including our weight. There is a long list of health complications which include but are not limited to:
So getting enough sleep is clearly important to protect ourselves and helps us stay healthy, but how can we ensure we’re getting enough uninterrupted sleep? Use of electronics continues to be the leading cause of decreased quality of sleep. This is because these devices release blue light which mimics light from the sun, making your body think it’s still daytime and shutting down melatonin secretion. Experts recommend turning off the TV and other electronic devices at least an hour before bedtime to optimize sleep quality.
Making your room as dark as possible (turning off all lights, using room-darkening curtains, closing the bedroom door, and unplugging or covering clock radios) and keeping the temperature no higher than 70 degrees Fahrenheit (60-68 degrees Fahrenheit is optimal) are two more tips experts give to help provide a good night’s sleep. Taking a hot bath up to two hours before bedtime, moving alarm clocks and other electrical devices away from your bed, and avoiding the use of loud alarm clocks may also help us get a full night of high quality sleep.
If you find your mind racing at night and are often “wired” throughout the day, trying relaxing exercises like yoga and meditation might be helpful. These exercises can have a calming effect on both your mind and body, allowing us to slow down and promote sleep.
Sleep apnea, an airway obstruction often times caused by obesity, is a serious health condition that leads to insomnia. Essentially a person suffering from sleep apnea stops breathing, and the brain and body are deprived of oxygen. Typically after a sleep apnea diagnosis, the person will be given a CPAP machine to allow for unrestricted breathing while sleeping, although changes in diet and exercise may also prove to be beneficial.
A good night of high quality sleep not only makes you feel good, but it promotes good health and can be achieved through simple sleep-promoting steps. If you feel you have a more serious issue, such as sleep apnea or a hormone imbalance, causing you insomnia, please see your doctor for testing.
Think positive, stay active, and smile. -A
For more information on the benefits of sleep, check out this link from Nestmaven.com https://www.nestmaven.com/sleep/benefits/