Sleep Is Important Because:
Your health and well-being are influenced by the quality and quantity of sleep. Sleep is so much more than just being a remedy for being tired. It deserves much more credit than we give it. Healthy sleep contributes to:
Your Physical Health
Getting a good sleep session helps to reduce the stress that affects your body in physical ways. It is truly a period of rejuvenation and repair. When we obtain either insufficient or poor quality sleep the body responds to this as a stress. Sleep deficiency and disruption have been linked to heart disease, hypertension, and stroke. Blood sugar control in diabetes and chronic pain syndromes like fibromyalgia are also negatively affected by poor sleep.
Your Mental Health
Getting enough sleep helps to regulate levels of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that affects your mood. Adequate levels of serotonin enhance feelings of happiness. Depression, lack of concentration, moodiness, anxiety, and depression may be created by low levels of serotonin brought on by poor sleep.
The Safety Of Yourself and Others
Sleeping enough makes it less likely that you will fall asleep when you should or need to be awake to make decisions or to perform tasks. It helps to keep you alert and able to react quickly to situations that pose danger. Excessive sleepiness has been shown to play a role in numerous human errors from medical decision-making by resident physicians to truck drivers. When you are well rested you will be at your best performance.
Your Memory and Ability to Focus and Learn
A good sleep session results in clear thinking and the ability to focus during waking hours. Both are important in order for you to learn. During REM sleep your brain goes through a process of memory consolidation. During this time, the day’s events, experiences, information learned, and feelings are committed to memory. Without adequate sleep in both quantity and quality REM sleep is disrupted and memory consolidation is incomplete.
Repairing Your Body
Cell damage is repaired during protein-producing sleep sessions. Quality sleep helps the body heal faster and is absolutely critical during the years of growth and development.
Weight Loss and Maintenance
Leptin is a hormone that helps make you feel full. Getting enough sleep helps keep leptin levels from dropping. Energy levels are higher after a good sleep. With more energy, you are more likely to exercise and feel like preparing healthy food. Poor sleep raises cortisol levels. This stress-related hormone increases hunger and interferes with fat metabolism further working against weight loss.