Monday, January 24, 2011

You Need A Good Night's Sleep

This is the first in a series of articles about the importance of sleep for your health and well-being.

In theory, the average person spends one-third of their life sleeping. In reality, millions of people suffer from inadequate and/or poor sleep, which can have a variety of short- and long-term consequences on their health and well-being. Lack of sleep contributes to depression, cardiovascular disease, digestive problems, gastric reflux, muscle aches, headaches, allergies, irritability, lack of mental ability, loss of lean muscle mass and loss of appetite, among other unpleasant health conditions. (And by the way, going without sleep longer than 19 days straight can literally kill you!)

We often screw up our chances of getting a good night's sleep at the beginning of the day. We eat things that don't agree with us, or things we shouldn't be eating that make us feel guilty. And many of us create poor sleep conditions, such as leaving a TV, radio or light(s) on (the entire night), and lots of other distractions that prevent the body from going into its normal sleep cycle.

All of these things can keep people from getting to sleep or staying asleep. Not getting a good night's sleep will restrict your body from producing
human growth hormone (HGH) and other natural hormones, like thyroxin, which is important for energy, weight loss and pain tolerance. In short, the consequences of inadequate or poor sleep are profound.

Health information provided by To Your Health, an MPA Media Publication.

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