And even though the exact reasons for sleep remain a mystery, we know many of the body’s major organ and regulatory systems continue to work actively while we sleep.
So why is sleep….or quality sleep so important to us?
Sleep, like diet and exercise, is vital for our minds and bodies to function, yet some people try to get by on very little. What we do at night affects everything we do during the day – our ability to learn, our skills, our memory, as well as our stamina, health and safety. It also affects our mood.
Here, what happens during sleep and why we need it.
How we adapt and express ourselves is due to events that occur while we doze.
- boosts immunity
- improves heart function and digestion
- sharpens concentration andjudgment
- rejuvenates cells and heals the body
- helps solve problems and facilitates learning
- increases work performance
- enhances mental and physical energy
- improves your sex life.
An the end of this artcle, is a resource for a detailed and scientific explanation of how one can possibly burn fat when having quality sleep….
It sounds better than any drug, herb or supplement you can buy. Waking up refreshed each day, increases your sense of wellbeing and helps you adapt to daily stresses more easily. All thanks to the events that take place once you turn out the light.
4 Stages of Sleep
While we sleep, our bodies move through four stages.
#1 SLEEP ONSET
The stage between wakefulness and sleep lasts up to seven minutes. If you wake up during this stage, you’ll feel as if you haven’t slept.
#2 LIGHT SLEEP
Eyes slowly roll from side to side and dream fragments may occur.
Starts 20 minutes after falling asleep, and blood pressure and body temperature drop.
#4 DEEP SLEEP
Sleepwalking is possible as the reflexes are intact. This is the deepest stage of sleep, where rapid eye movement (REM) and dreams occur. We usually remember our dreams if we wake up during this stage.
Why do we sleepwalk?
In children, it’s mostly due to psychological problems they usually grow out of.
Biochemical imbalances from stress to substance abuse can trigger sleepwalking in adults.
If the condition runs in your family, you may have inherited the tendency.
Why do we snore?
About 40% of the population suffers from partial airway blockage causing abnormal breathing and hypoxia. Oxygen deprivation leads to muscle weakness, one of the main causes of snoring, creating a vicious cycle. Snoring can be a symptom of sleep apnea.
How does lack of sleep affect us?
If left untreated, sleep deprivation (four to six hours a night), snoring and sleep
apnea can cause prolonged oxygen deprivation, resulting in an increased risk of:
- poor concentration
- lowered immunity
- early ageing
- insulin resistance and diabetes
- heart disease and stroke
- fatigue-related accidents
- hearing loss
- decreased sex drive and impotence
What affect does diet have on sleep?
Increased acidity in the blood, decreases its ability to carry oxygen. However, diet plays
a significant role in the pH profile of your blood. If you’re having sleep problems it’s worth
increasing your intake of these alkalising foods:
- leafy greens
- shiitake mushrooms
- kombu (sea vegetable)
GUIDE TO SLEEP HYGIENE
Steps to help you establish a good routine for better sleep.
1 – Develop a good sleep rhythm by going to bed and waking up at the same
time each day, including the weekends.
2 – Don’t do strenuous exercise before bed. Yoga or breathing exercises are
best for relaxation.
3 – Steer clear and bright lights and emotionally charged TV programs
and books before bed.
4 – Avoid reading and working in bed - train your brain to associate sleep
5 – Make sure your bed is comfortable and bedroom is airy and dark.
6 – If you feel hungry at bed time, have a light protein snack. Avoid starchy food, carbohydrates and heavy meals at night. Don’t eat anything once hour before going to bed.
7 – Don’t nap for longer than an hour during the day. Ideally, nap between
1pm and 2pm. That’s all for now…. don’t forget to sleep soundly tonight
cheers as always..Blogger MD
Resource for further reading here
Sleep doctor Michael Breus talks about Uncovering Sleep Secrets