Sleep and a Healthy Lifestyle

A good nights sleep is important for many reasons. As we all know catching a few zzz’s can make you feel better but the benefits of sleep go much deeper than an improved mood. Sleep plays an important part in maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

I am a mom. I haven’t had a full nights sleep in over 4 years. My children have this unique super power, the power to detect when my head touches my pillow at night, delaying bedtime for Mommy inevitably. My husband and I often laugh about this situation, but in all honesty it is not a laughing matter.

Sleep plays a factor in your quality of health. Not getting enough sleep can lead to an increase in accidents. The Institute of Medicine estimates that one out of five auto accidents in the U.S. are a direct result of drowsy driving. When you are not sleeping enough you are more likely to trip over toys or cut yourself when dicing veggies because you are not as alert as you would be after a good night of sleep.

Making time for more sleep can improve your memory. When we sleep our brains are busy working into the night, going through the consolidation process which is like strengthening memories. Sleeping an adequate amount of time leads to clearer thinking, less confusion and fewer weird incidents such as putting the dustpan in the refrigerator instead of the broom closet. I had had several weird events that could have been avoided if I had been sleeping like a normal person. Once I poured milk into the coffee pot when I meant to pour milk into a cup for my son, obviously I was exhausted and not thinking clearly.

Sleep impacts your overall health. People that have a Blossoms Healthcare sleeping routine are more successful at maintaining their weight. When you are tired your body is likely to crave foods that are high in fat and calories because they need the fuel to keep going. Also, when you are exhausted you are likely to skip exercising and settle for fast or convenience foods to avoid the effort of cooking simply because you are tired.

Sleep patterns can impact your blood glucose levels. In studies conducted on healthy young people after four days of inadequate sleep three of ten of the subjects had a significant change in blood glucose levels, they qualified as pre-diabetic after 4 days of irregular sleep.

Sleep is vital for your health. There is no substitute for sleep, despite what the manufacturers of energy drinks want you to believe.

I may not see 8 hours of sleep a night anytime soon, but I am taking on a new outlook when it comes to sleep. Instead of viewing it as a chore or trying to push more into my day, I am considering a good nights sleep an investment in my health and my family.

How many hours of sleep are you getting each night? I average 3.5 hours now but I am striving for 6 hours a night. If you are not sleeping more than 5 hours, I challenge you to catch a few extra zzz’s and improve your quality of life.

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Comments

  1. shelly peterson says:

    this is a great post. I forget how important sleep is for so many different reasons. I get maybe a few hours a night, I need to work on this.

  2. Nicole Dz says:

    Sometimes I have trouble sleeping at night, I try to limit what I do before bed so my mind is not wondering. I try to read a book or take a hot bath before bed. Sometimes it helps. But I need more sleep as well.

  3. Sarah L says:

    Sleep is SO important. I get 7-8 hours usually. I NEED TO GET TO BED RIGHT NOW!

  4. I really need to get more sleep. Getting enough sleep is so important

  5. yikes only 3.5!!! i get about 8 hours a night
    alicia k (Petite Pilates Pixie) recently posted..NEW Group Class Schedule

  6. Sandra VanHoey says:

    Sleep is an issue I have had for a long time. Besides waking up many times, I just seem to have this pattern I have fallen into and cannot break. I have to work on getting more myself because there are days, you just feel run down.

  7. Julie Wood says:

    I sometimes have insomnia for some unknown reason. I always get at least 7 hours of sleep a night. But I know that exercising really gives me a good night sleep. When getting older, it can be hard getting a good night sleep.

  8. Rebecca Parsons says:

    I think this is such a great article. When it comes to sleep I don’t think about it until I am beyond tired. I tell myself I am going to go to bed earlier, then life happens.

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