The power of sleep…

I have posted about the importance of naps during the day for re-energizing your body. But nothing is more important than a full nights worth of sleep to CTRL-ALT-DEL your body from all the rigors of today’s hectic lifestyle.

Whether you work out or not, your body and mind is performing billions of functions throughout the day. Moving, thinking, day dreaming, problem solving, even normal conversations puts your body and mind in ‘work’ mode. Imagine having a car or machine that just never stops. It is always doing something. At some point it needs to take a rest for proper maintenance and longevity.

Memory and Creativity…

And here is something that is surprising to many. Even when you sleep, your mind is still functioning. But it is functioning in a state called ‘consolidation’, sorting out the day’s events especially new territory that require physical or mental skills. That is why so many people experience that ‘Aha’ moment when waking up from a good night’s rest and what they were trying to solve now has an answer!

Longevity…

Recent studies are indicating that the amount of sleep one gets each night may have an impact on life span. In those studies, those that slept on average, five hours or less per night had shorter life span than those that slept 6 ½ hours or more per night.

This could be because people who sleep less hours (six or fewer) have higher blood levels of inflammatory proteins than those who get more. For example, C-reactive protein which is associated with heart attack risk is higher in people who got six or fewer hours of sleep a night.

Athletics…

You have always heard about getting a good night’s sleep before a big athletic event. University studies have proven that people that sleep ten hours a night for consecutive weeks improve their sprint speed, hand-eye coordination, reflexes and experience less fatigue. These are proven, measurable facts. Imagine what it can do in your ordinary life.

Smarter…

Sleep patterns of school age children can impact their attention span in class as well as memory retention. Children suffering from ADHD are known to not get sufficient sleep. That is why it is important to ‘teach’ your children proper sleep habits and patterns from early adolescence.

Weight control…

If you are going on some kind of meal plan make sure that you also include proper sleep in your regimen. It is an indicator of how much fat you will end up losing and how much muscle you end up retaining.

People who diet usually feel hungrier when they sleep less. That helps explain the term ‘midnight munchies’. Your metabolism and sleep are controlled by the same area of the brain. If you are sleepy, but cannot go to sleep, your body releases certain hormones in your blood that also drives up your appetite.

So even if you eat right and exercise regularly, don’t forget to incorporate that one final magic bullet that binds all this together to maximize results.  Put sleep in the equation and be…Fit Forlife!

This entry was posted in Random thoughts and opinions and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *