How Getting Enough Rest Is Vital for Good Health

By on December 23, 2017
How Getting Enough Rest Is Vital for Good Health

It’s easy to make the excuse that there’s only so much time in the day to get everything done, and the first thing to go usually is eight hours of sleep at night. But you may be working against yourself if you’re not getting enough rest. The following are just a few ways rest is vital for good health:

Heart Repair

One of the most important reasons why you need a good night’s sleep is so your heart can rest and repair itself. In fact, a study shows that adults who sleep fewer than six hours per night are twice as likely to have a heart attack or stroke. When you don’t sleep for long periods of time, your heart rate and blood pressure do not have a chance to decrease to a resting rate, which can lead to high blood pressure and other problems. Because your heart is linked so strongly to your other vital organs, these issues can also lead to kidney disease, stroke and other health problems.

Weight Management

If you’ve been trying to lose weight or get back in shape but have been sacrificing your eight hours of sleep to do so, you’re working against your body. Sleep plays an important role in your natural hormone balance, some of which affect your appetite. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute explains that the hormone ghrelin that makes you feel hungry goes up and the hormone leptin that makes you feel full goes down when you don’t get enough sleep. So instead of thinking your stomach is rumbling because of your diet, you may need to get more rest to reset your hormone levels. In addition, how your body reacts to insulin, or your blood sugar levels, depends on how much sleep you get. If your insulin levels are off, you may be at an increased risk for diabetes.

Mental Health

A lack of sleep doesn’t just result in a little grumpiness; it affects your mental state, mood, concentration and memory. If you consistently don’t get enough sleep, your bad mood can turn into mood swings, paranoia, impulsive behavior, stress and depression. If that’s not enough, sleep helps you form and consolidate memories and then retrieve them when you’re awake. This also can affect your ability to concentrate, problem solve, make good decisions and learn something new. Just like with your physical health, you may be working against yourself if you’re sacrificing your sleep schedule to get more work done because your mental faculties are decreased.

Better Rest

To improve or maintain your health, you should have a sleep routine to help you get more rest at night. Start by turning off your electronics one to two hours before you go to sleep. Take a hot shower, read a book or meditate to get your body ready for sleep. Make sure your bedroom is conducive to the best night’s rest by making it dark, cool and comfortable. Invest in blinds or shades that block out any external light through your windows. Invest in a mattress that is the right size and firmness level for your body so you don’t wake up with any aches and pains. Cover your bed with soft sheets and a blanket to help you relax and stay asleep all night.

Rest is vitally important to your health. It’s the time your body needs to repair and heal so you can wake up refreshed and ready to take on the next day.

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How Getting Enough Rest Is Vital for Good Health