Why is Sleep so Important?

We hear this all the time - “you need a good night’s sleep” for x, for z - but why? Why is getting enough sleep so important?

I'm going to break down for you just a little bit of why sleep is so important.

Better Productivity and Concentration
Research shows that getting enough sleep is directly linked to better concentration, productivity, and cognition. There was even a study by the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry that showed a child’s sleep was directly correlated with their behavior and academic performance. 

Calorie Regulation
While the results are not “sleep well = lose weight”, there is evidence to suggest that a good night’s rest can help a person consume fewer calories in a day. Think about it - if you are sleeping terribly, on and off all night, when you wake you might go snack in the kitchen until you’re tired again. When you wake up, you’re groggy and you don’t want to cook breakfast, so you just grab a croissant on your way to work. You need to stay awake so you have coffee after coffee, don’t end up drinking water, etc. When a person doesn’t sleep well or for long, it messes with their body’s ability to regulate food intake correctly. 

Greater Physical Performance
Of course we’re not all athletes looking to compete, but if we are planning to go to the gym, take a yoga class, or even play with our kid, adequate sleep with aid in these plans. It helps to better our performance intensity, gives us more energy, better coordination, faster speed, and better mental functioning. When you’ve had a good night’s rest and your kid yells “TAG!” you wanna hear him right away and outrun that little dude, no way you’re gonna be it.

Lower Risk of Heart Disease and Inflammation.
High Blood Pressure is a risk factor that can lead to heart disease. Sleep gives the body a chance to regulate its blood pressure, giving you a chance to reset and have overall better heart health. Studies also show that sleep deprivation is linked to inflammatory diseases, one commonly causing the other.

Sleep is the body’s chance to click the “reset button” - maybe not reset completely, but it’s your body’s chance to repair, regenerate, and recover from the previous day. Better sleep quality can help the body fight off infection better, and to ultimately live a better, healthier life. Getting a good night’s rest is just as important as regular exercise and eating a balanced diet.

 

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