Week 10 – Sleep

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Adequate sleep is a very important part of living a healthy life and can benefit your heart, weight, mind and more as it allows your body to rest and repair. Which is vital to your well being.

The benefits of sleep includes:

  • Repairs the body – While sleeping, the body produces extra protein molecules to help build new cells and repair the damaged ones this is strengthening the body’s ability to fight infection.
  • Reduces stress – A good nights sleep can help lower blood pressure and cortisol, the stress hormone. Physical effects of stress can produce “wear and tear” on the body and degenerate cells, propelling the aging process. Sleep helps to slow these effects and encourages a state of relaxation.
  • Helps control weight issues – Sleep regulates the hormones that control your appetite, when you don’t get enough, this balance is interrupted and your appetite increases. Lack of sleep also slows down the metabolism which leads to weight gain over time.
  • Better mood – Insufficient sleep during the night can cause you to become agitated or moody the next day.

Studies have shown that limited sleep can lead to long term mood disorders like depression and anxiety not to mention chronic fatigue.

Sleep Solutions:

  • Make a habit of going to bed and getting up at a certain time each day
  • No technology. As you unwind and get ready for bed it’s best to turn off the technology because they can mess with the pineal gland, the part of the brain that produces melatonin (the sleep hormone).
  • Your bedroom should be peaceful, quiet and dark
  • Avoid exercising just before bedtime. Exercising fills your body with adrenaline and cortisol, you want to be relaxing not getting pumped up.
  • Jot down your thoughts. If you struggle to sleep because you have an overactive mind you may find it useful to keep a notepad next to your bed to write down everything that is on your mind such as problems, tasks etc. This will allow you to let them go.
  • Breathe, slowly and deeply. Most of us, don’t take deep full breaths. When you hop into bed, bring your focus to your breathing – watch your belly rise and fall. Inhale for a count of 5 and exhale for a count of 5.

Your task for this week – Create a night time routine and will allow you to get approximately 7 hours of sleep each night.

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