Are you a night owl like me but also have to wake up early to get your day going resulting in the infamous ‘5 more minutes’ being your daily morning mantra? Well, this article is just for you and how to get better sleep.
I used to work late hours, being awake all night and then dragging myself around in the morning resembling more or less a zombie. But that is until I read up on the importance of sleep for better health.
Sleep is a necessity that we take for granted. Got a few extra projects? An all-nighter will work. Got a party to attend? I’ll attend it at night. Do friends have to meet? A late dinner sounds just perfect.
Sleep is an essential tool that not only regulates your physical health but maintains and improves your mental health as well. The benefits of sleep are innumerous. The basic ones being improved memory and obviously, lesser dark circles under your eyes. But did you know that it helps you regulate your calories as well? Lower your weight? Want to know more about it? Read the article below to find out.
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Why sleep at all?
Sleep is a basic survival instinct. A person is born with it and cannot escape it no matter how hard he or she tries. Just like you need a little break from everything once in a while, your body does too. Sleep is the way your body takes a vacation. It shuts off all unnecessary systems and solely focuses on relaxing. Sleep also gives your mind some space and time to sort your day out.
Why Is A Good Night’s Sleep Crucial?
Sleep is required by everyone. However, you can only function well when you get a good night’s sleep. What is a good sleep though?
According to the Mayo Clinic, adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep.
But what does a good sleep result in? Let’s dig deeper.
- Better Brain Function
Benefit no.1 – it improves your brain function. Your brain is a major organ that works non-stop and doesn’t rest even when you’re asleep. It is the one that sends signals to your cardiac, digestive, and other such systems to keep working while you sleep.
When you sleep, your brain prepares itself and your body for the next day. Just like you need to prepare for an important meeting beforehand, your brain needs to prepare for the day ahead. This helps you learn new information and retain things better. Being deficient in sleep results in bad decision making and trouble controlling emotions. It has also been linked to depression and suicide.
- Low Weight Gain
Low sleep messes up leptin and ghrelin, the hormones in the brain that are responsible for appetite. This makes you hungry even when you don’t need food. Also, lack of sleep makes your resistance to unhealthy food fade fast. But don’t rely on sleep alone to lose weight. You need to get proper sleep, eat a healthy diet, and exercise regularly for such a result. Read my blog on Superfoods.
- Great Exercise/Workout Results
When you don’t sleep, your body doesn’t get time for muscle repair and energy buildup. The motivation to work harder and better goes away as well. Your reflex rate will be a lot slower too since your cells aren’t charged enough. Proper rest results in your best workout performance!
- Lower Risk of Cardiac Diseases
While you sleep, your blood vessels get a chance to rest as your heart pumps blood slower. When you don’t get sleep, your heart beats faster and faster to meet the demands of the straining cells. This results in higher blood pressure and cholesterol level. If you sleep now, it will pay off in the long run and save you from chronic heart diseases.
- Prevents Depression
Since sleep deprivation affects the brain and many chemicals in your body, primarily serotonin – a chemical whose deficiency results in depression, a good night’s sleep prevents you from any such illness.
- Stronger Immune System
Since sleep is the time when your cells replenish, lack of sleep results in weak cells. The cells of the immune system, in such a case, will not be able to guard your system and an outbreak of bacteria will be unstoppable, resulting in diseases.
- Better Mood
As I discussed above, sleep messes up your hormones. Hence it also regulates your emotions. Your body needs time to develop responses to certain situations and generate fresh points of view. When you get enough sleep, you tend to have more positive reactions than negative ones, resulting in a better mood.
- Improved Brain Function
Trouble sleeping results in low memory. You have trouble holding onto and recalling details. Since sleep enables your brain to make space for new facts, without sleep, it is tough to take in new information. Getting a good night’s rest makes your brain have enough time to store memories, facts, and compile thoughts which results in a better cognitive system.
How to Get Better Sleep?
On average, an adult needs 7 to 9 hours of sleep a day to function well. Anything less will lead to fatigue and many of the problems mentioned above. Too much sleep can also result in adverse reactions like lethargy and weight gain.
Now that we know what lack of sleep causes and how much sleep we should get
- Build a Routine
Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. This helps maintain a set cycle that directly shuts down once it is time to go to sleep. Be careful to keep the same timing both on weekends and weekdays.
2. Choose Appropriate Surroundings
Keep your bedroom dark, dim, and quiet. Avoid doing anything else in your bedroom so that your body recognizes it as a place to rest.
3. Keep an Eye on Your Caffeine Intake
Avoid caffeine which includes coffee, tea, and even soda. Steering clear of nicotine will be helpful as well. These substances stimulate your body, causing you to be more active and chasing away your sleep for at least 8 hours.
4. Eat Healthy Foods
It is recommended to have a light dinner and a healthy breakfast. If you can’t do so, avoid any heavy meals at least 3 hours before you sleep.
5. Building the Setting
The hour before you sleep should not include any screens or bright lights. Quietly build up the atmosphere, signaling your body that it will be time to rest soon.
Foods That Promote Good Sleep
The food you consume has a big impact on your health and lifestyle. Certain foods have specific nutrients and elements that help promote better sleep. Some of those foods include;
- Warm milk
- Chamomile tea
- Kiwi fruit
- Tart cherries
- Fatty fish
There are also other ways food can promote your sleep. Avoiding spicy foods, steering clear of caffeine as I have mentioned before, and avoiding skipping meals help you achieve better sleep. Replacing refined foods with whole-grain food also helps eradicate unhealthy sleeping patterns. Staying hydrated, exercising regularly, and not eating too close to your bedtime are healthy practices as well.
Now that you know how important sleep is, here is a little accessory you might want to treat yourself to help in your journey of self-care!
Click image to view
This wireless sleep headphone mask is the perfect solution to all your sleepless nights or tossing and turning. It has a pretty 3D design, Bluetooth, and light-blocking features that guarantee a night of relaxation and peace.
The design is specially engineered to allow you to listen to music without wearing any headphones, now how cool is that! With the help of the LC Doldia sleep headphones, you’ll sleep peacefully and wake up refreshed.
Sleep only requires one basic thing and that is comfort and comfort of the mind as well as the body. While the music helps comfort your mind, the ergonomic design helps comfort your facial muscles.
The contours of the eyes are made with a depth so your eyes can wander around freely and have no applied pressure. Now you don’t have to worry about having dent lines on your face from the too-tight silk masks.
Stereo Sound Quality
The LC Dolida sleeping mask features a Bluetooth V-5.0 that produces high-fidelity stereo sound benefits. It helps you immerse yourself in soft and slow music as you get all the benefits of Getting Enough Sleep.
They charge for just about 2-2.5 hours. The charging time is low however the playing time isn’t. You get a full 10 hours of playing time, enough to get as much sleep as you want. You do need to position the mask so that the speakers align to the ears when in use. Due to this, you probably won’t be able to sleep on your side.
The music played through the speakers can be connected easily with the help of its advanced Bluetooth. The Bluetooth is also really easy to use, simply press the power button and wait for the light to flash that signals the state of the device.
The Bluetooth displays an amusing name, ‘BT-FAAH’ that will be easily distinguishable as well as pairable. Before I forget, let me tell you that it only connects to 1 device at a time.
I am a very light sleeper and I hate it when even the slightest bit of light seeps through my eye mask. I need absolute dark for me to sleep. If you’re just like me, this mask is the perfect match for you!
The sleep headphones mask is uniquely designed around your nose area that provides excellent coverage. It effectively blocks all lights from entering and prevents any kind of light leakage while you sleep. This is especially effective for light sleepers. Block the lights and listen to mellow music to have the best sleeping experience ever!
Shape and Construction
The memory foam material and super soft fabric make this mask the ideal tool to act on the importance of relaxation and getting good sleep.
The mask is very light in weight and skin-friendly. The breathable material does not clog your pores hence perfect for even people with oily skin. The breathability helps your skin rejuvenate and nourish at night.
The fibers of the hypoallergenic material allow only oxygen to enter and keep the dry air outside. The mask is designed in the form of sunglasses hence it fits even the smallest face and adds style even to your sleep!
The material of the mask is very thin to be considered as something that has the ‘noise-canceling’ feature.
The music from the headphones, however, plays some role in canceling out the noise by providing you with a new source of the sound. This kind of compensates for the whole no noise-canceling deal.
- Crisp and loud audio
- Easy to adjust
- Light on skin
- Affordable price
Does not cancel noise
You cannot sleep on your side
I’m sure by now you’ve thoroughly understood the importance of a good night’s sleep. Good sleep not only elevates your physical competence but keeps you emotionally and cognitively healthy as well.
This much-needed article on the importance of sleep for better health covered everything from the effects of sleep and the importance of it to the foods that help you sleep better. I even included one of my favorite headphone masks that will guarantee a well-rested night.
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References: How many hours of sleep are enough for good health? (2019). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/expert-answers/how-many-hours-of-sleep-are-enough/faq-20057898