Monday, October 14, 2013

Benefits of healthy sleep

I'm currently taking a class called Sleep and Sleep Disorders and was reading a section about sleep in terms of good health and longevity and thought I should share some important advice with you all.

While exercise and diet are extremely important for living a long and healthy life, studies have shown that sleep might actually have a greater effect on longevity than diet and exercise.

There's enough things that we as humans do to take years off of our life that we need all the sleep we can get! If you're in college and have a big exam or project coming up, don't make it a habit to always pull all-nighters.  It's best to do a little bit every day to stay in the school mode as well as get a good night's sleep!  This can be difficult sometimes during finals time, but your performance and mood will suffer if you aren't getting enough sleep.

Healthy sleep strengthens your immune system, promotes tissue growth, increases vitality and may increase longevity. Sleep deprivation leads to risk for diseases, colds, or the flu, impairs the immune system, and your mood and happiness will be directly affected.

Your body requires 1 hour of sleep for every 2 hours that you're awake.  When you are awake throughout the day, you are acquiring sleep debt.  If you were to get one less hour of sleep than you need for 8 days straight, you have now acquired 8 hours of sleep debt that your biological clock keeps track of.  This needs to be repaid or you'll be hurting your physical, emotional, and mental health and performance. 

The take away: Get a good night's sleep regularly.  Of course there are exceptions, but be sure to repay your sleep debt!!

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