Every living creature needs to rest, whether it’s an ant or an elephant. Scientists have proposed a number of reasons why people need sleep, but without a regular 5-8 hours-worth of shuteye every night, the human body is sure to suffer from life-threatening consequences. If we put the importance of sleep into perspective, the human can operate for longer without food than without sleep. Here are top five reasons to get more sleep.
Top 5 Reasons to Get More Sleep
1. Recharging the Brain
This is the most important one from all the reasons to get more sleep. Sleep is the best way of recharging the brain, the most important organ in the body. During sleep, the brain is able to shut down and recharge, repairing neurons and other vital systems that are used on a daily basis. When sleeping, the brain is also given a chance to reorganize all the problems in the body, and it also finds out ways to deal with them. The brain also processes new information when sleeping, as well as arranging and storing memories.
2. Lack of Sleep Increases Weight
For weight conscious people, this is probably the most important reasons to get more sleep. If you have a broken or reduced sleep, the body is unable to store the amount of energy needed to function throughout the day. In order to recoup the amount of energy lost through not sleeping, the human body will increase appetite, getting the energy that’s required from food – which usually results in sugary snacks and sweets.
A recent study by the University of Chicago showed that participants who were allowed 5.5 hours sleep, compared to participants who were allowed 8.5 hours sleep, ate an average of 221 calories more in free snacks throughout the course of the day.
A person’s metabolic rate and energy consumption is lowered when sleeping, and the saved energy is transferred to the brain to make vital repairs. During sleep, a person’s metabolic rate can decrease by up to 15 per cent. That may seem a small reduction, especially when we consider the amount of physical activity we do every day, but compared to the human body’s basal metabolic rate of around 80 per cent that’s needed to maintain all cellular processes, sleep greatly decreases metabolism. That’s why you’re not supposed to eat before bed!
4. Lack of Sleep Increases Diabetes
Just one missed night of a full, uninterrupted sleep can increase the chances of proinflammatory markers in the blood. Apart from boosting hunger-promoting chemicals in the body, studies have shown that inflammation of these makers can lead to type insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. Scientists have discovered that the body’s ability to keep blood glucose at a consistent level was reduced significant when sleep was limited to four hours a night.
5. Lack of Sleep Reduces Sex Drive
Not sleeping enough every night has a direct impact on the amount of testosterone in men, with researches claiming that sex drive can be reduced from anywhere between 10 and 15 per cent. Considering that testosterone levels naturally decline in men by only one or two per cent every year, a rough night’s sleep can leave your sex life drastically aged.
Those were the top reasons to get more sleep. Now you should look over your sleeping habits and correct them to gain better health.
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Zoe writes on behalf of Archers Sleep Centre, to share knowledge on how to get a better night’s sleep for improved health.