Waking up from a good night’s sleep can leave you feeling refreshed, revitalised and ready to start the day ahead, but it takes much more than the odd night of 8 hours to really make an impact on your overall lifestyle. A decent night’s sleep is something everyone should strive to achieve on a regular basis, in order to reap the long-term benefits that make up part of a happy and healthy lifestyle.
Research has found that a long-term routine that prioritises quality sleep over work, stress and computers, for example, can lead to lifelong improvements to your everyday lifestyle and health. In this post, you will find seven of the many benefits that a healthy sleep routine can bring, from both physical and mental aspects.
1. A stronger immune system
A lack of sleep can make you much more susceptible to pesky colds and other bugs that wreak havoc on your health and happiness. When you sleep, your body produces proteins called cytokines, which help your body to fight off illnesses, so without enough sleep, chances are your body won’t have the time to produce enough cytokines to boost your immunity.
Those who make time to enjoy a good night’s sleep every evening, allow their bodies to produce enough of these cytokines to defend their bodies from colds, flu and other common illnesses that try to attack.
2. A healthier mindset
There’s a huge contrast between the moods of those who slept soundly and those who spent hours tossing and turning the night before. After a peaceful night’s sleep, you’re much more likely to wake up feeling rested and motivated to kickstart the day. Compare this to those who suffer from bad moods and irritability as a result of a bad night of sleep and you can see just how effective quality sleep can be.
What’s more, if you manage to maintain a healthy sleep routine for the long-term, you’re much less likely to experience long-term mood disorders such as anxiety or depression.
3. A slimmer physique
Not only will a healthy sleep routine help to keep your mood in check, it will also contribute towards a slimmer waistline, too.
Those who manage to sleep for at least 7 hours every day are able to produce the correct levels of leptin, a hormone which tells your body when it is full. You will naturally know when to stop eating and won’t be tempted to eat more than it necessary.
On the other hand, studies have found that those running on less than 7 hours sleep are more likely to produce higher levels of ghrelin. This hormone makes you feel hungry and, as a result, you’re more likely to overeat and gain weight.
4. A greater libido
A healthy sleeping pattern can lead to a healthy sex life, according to research into the benefits of sleep. When you allow yourself to rest and recuperate each night, your body has enough energy to maintain a greater libido, especially compared to those with poor sleeping routines.
5. Better chances of conceiving
Not only will your libido be improved with 8 hours of slumber, so too will your chances of conceiving. Research has found that a large proportion of those who struggle to conceive often suffer from sleepless nights too. This is related to the lack of reproductive hormones that are being created as you sleep – the more you sleep, the higher the levels of these hormones your body is able to produce.
6. A healthier heart
One particularly important benefit that long-term quality sleeping can bring is a boost to your heart health. By giving your body enough time at night to recuperate, you’re less likely to develop conditions such as high blood pressure and heart disease, for example. When it comes to sleeping, it pays to think about the future and the long-term benefits it can bring.
7. A lower risk of diabetes
Sleep plays an important role in how your body processes and makes use of glucose, a vital component of our energy levels. With enough sleep every night, your body is able to process your blood sugar more efficiently, by using insulin to move glucose into your cells. As a result, you’re much less likely to develop lifelong conditions such as type 2 diabetes, whereby your body is unable to make proper use of the insulin it produces.
As you can see, it isn’t just the immediate benefits that a good night’s sleep can bring – there are plenty of lifelong benefits, too. These advantages aren’t developed overnight, which is why it’s vital to adopt a healthy sleeping routine that you can stick to. Over time, repeated nights of quality sleep will bring a boost to your overall health and happiness.