The 5 Benefits of Good Sleep on Our Health
Sleep is the panacea for all ills. However, our busy lifestyles allow us only a few hours of sleep every night. Over time, lack of sleep can make you ill! Less or poor-quality sleep can have a wide range of negative effects on your health, from hair fall to heart disease and even the onset of diabetes and mental disorders like Alzheimer’s.
Getting good quality sleep every night, or even power naps for a few minutes during the day, has tremendous implications for the state of your health and longevity. Here are 5 benefits that underline the importance of sleep:
- It boosts your immunity.
The immune system is strengthened when you get about 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night. Better immunity, in turn, results in higher resistance to diseases and minor illnesses. Those who sleep well at night have better heart and mental health, reduced blood pressure, lower risk of stroke, and better digestion. It also reduces inflammation, thus resulting in body pains being eliminated with regular sleep.
- It clears your skin.
Sleep heals the body by encouraging its natural restorative processes. A night of deep sleep for about 8 hours results in clearer skin. The skin’s cellular structure heals itself during the night hours, and this process is spurred on by deep sleep. The skin’s cells repair and restore themselves during this time, and lock in essential hydration to keep the tissues soft, so that fine lines and wrinkles are kept at bay. You will notice fewer dark circles around the eyes, less fine lines and more radiance when you sleep well at night. Supplement this by using a neem oil soap like Hamam to clean the skin every day.
- It reduces stress.
You may have noticed this before – if you went to bed stressed but slept deeply, you woke up feeling much less anxious and worried than the night before. This is because sleep calms down stress hormones, reduces elevated blood pressure and lowers the spikes in blood sugar. When all systems are calmer, your brain releases feel-good endorphins to improve mental health. Thus, a good night’s sleep is important for lower stress and anxiety. It is most important for those who suffer from mental health issues like depression, paranoia and schizophrenia.
- It increases mental focus.
The importance of sleep is further underlined with increased alertness and better focus on tasks. In contrast, sleeping less or badly results in poor concentration, inability to focus even on urgent tasks, irritability, and less response to artificial stimulants like caffeine. If you have been suffering headaches and lack of concentration recently, try going to bed earlier for a few nights after switching off all your digital devices – a few nights of good sleep will set you right!
- It helps weight loss.
Poor sleep results in the body not allowing fat to be burnt, to release energy slowly. Thus, if you are trying to lose weight but not sleeping sufficiently, then you know that less sleep is putting a spanner in the way of your weight loss effort. Try and get at least 7 hours of sleep every night, and follow it up with a healthy breakfast. In a few days, you will see your efforts paying off as your body burns fat cells faster.
Following these simple tips will keep you happy and fit for a long time to come.