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The Best Advice: SLEEP MORE!

It’s always baffling that getting people to do something that they love AND that's necessary for health can be so difficult! In this instance we’re talking specifically about sleep.




I think the answer lies in the fact that most people don't realize just how critical sleep is for our overall health and wellness. According to the Institute of Health “ Quality sleep - and getting enough of it at the right times - is as essential to survival as food and water”.


“Quality sleep - and getting enough of it at the right times - is as essential to survival as food and water”

Sleep is something that we absolutely require if we want to live lives filled with health and happiness. What exactly is it about sleep that makes it so critical? Sleep impacts almost every tissue and bodily system we have – from the brain, heart, and lungs to metabolism, immune function, mood, and disease resistance. We know that a chronic lack of sleep, or poor quality sleep, will increase the risk of disorders like high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression, and obesity. It is my hope that with a true understanding of the importance of better quality sleep people will start to take it seriously in their lives.


How do I improve sleep?


So do you need help increasing the amount and/or quality of sleep you’re getting? The following set of “sleep hygiene” habits are simple and can have a positive effect:

  • Not drinking alcohol, coffee or tea and avoiding other stimulants four to six hours before going to bed.

  • Avoiding smoking before bedtime or during the night.

  • Avoiding heavy meals and spicy foods before going to bed.

  • Getting more physical exercise during the day, but avoiding exercise right before going to bed.

  • Trying to make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, and not too hot or cold.

What steps do you need to take to increase this hugely important aspect of your health?




Resources:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279320/

https://www.ninds.nih.gov/Disorders/Patient-Caregiver-Education/Understanding-Sleep

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