Let's talk about...Sleep!
Hands up if you have hit snooze multiple times and then still had to drag yourself out of bed recently
Hands up if you know the full benefits of getting good, quality sleep every night?
Getting a good night’s sleep has a bigger impact on your health then you may realise. It’s equally as important as eating a healthy, balanced diet and getting enough exercise.
Here are the top reasons why you should start paying more attention to your pillow:
1. Maintain a healthy weight
Sleep plays a key role in how your body uses food for energy. Some research has suggested the hormones that signal hunger and fullness are changed in people who are sleep deprived, which can then influence the types of food you are choosing to eat (i.e. higher in sugars and fats). It an also contribute to overeating later in the day as your body requires more energy to stay awake for longer periods.
2. Reduce Stress Levels
Stress can manifest in any shape, size or situation, and each person has their own coping mechanisms. When we are stressed the body releases “stress hormones” such as cortisol, which can keep you awake. Try practicing some relaxation techniques before bed to reduce your stress levels and help you get a better nights sleep, which also will help relax the systems in your body that are responsible for producing the stress response.
3. Look after your Relationship
How many times have you snapped at your partner first thing in the morning because you haven’t had a good nights sleep? Your relationships will thanks you for getting some extra shut eye. Your headspace will be more positive which will help you to feel good. This has a knock-on effect on those around you, and will create a happier environment to live in.
4. Happy Healthy Heart
Lack of sleep can increase risk of heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. The better nights sleep you get, they happier your heart will be. Good-quality sleep reduces the work that your heart needs to do, as blood-pressure and heart-rate are lower at night. A study has found that 6-8 hours per night seemed to be the optimum amount of sleep linked to a healthy heart.
5. Better Performance
Did you know that sleep can help you to stay focused, improve concentration and make better decisions? Poor sleep has been found to negatively impact some aspects of brain function similar level as alcohol intoxication (PubMed)
There are many things that can disrupt your sleeping patterns, such as the third-trimester of pregnancy, or having a newborn baby, which makes it extra important to try and fit in some extra zzz’s whenever possible. The dishes won’t judge you for looking after your mental well being!
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