Some people view sleep as a big waste of time, but it really is so important! And the benefits aren’t just about staying awake at your morning meeting.
Getting enough good quality sleep has a heap of health benefits. Here are six of the most compelling reasons to jump into bed.
1. You’ll have glowing skin
Ever noticed how dull and lackluster your skin looks after a few late nights? There’s a reason they call it beauty sleep! After you nod off, your body goes into serious repair mode, and your skin recovers from the barrage of sun, pollution and other irritants it’s been exposed to by day. Cellular turnover speeds up, and skincare ingredients are more easily absorbed. Which all adds up to a healthier, younger-looking complexion.
2. And be less stressed
Stress and sleep have a complex relationship. The more stressed you are, the harder it is to fall asleep and sleep soundly. And the better your sleep, the less stressed you’ll be. Not only does a good night’s sleep improve mood and lower cortisol levels, it better equips you to deal with stressful situations. So rest up!
3. It can help with weight loss
If you’re struggling to lose weight, try catching more z’s. Various studies reveal a relationship between insufficient sleep and weight gain, and recent research pinpoints one reason why. Sleep-deprived participants had increased hunger and appetite, and were less able to limit their intake of high-fat snacks. No doubt why we reach for the chocolate when we’re feeling tired and grumpy.
4. You’ll be sharper at work or school
Sleep the widely recommended seven to eight hours per night, and you’ll be equipped with better concentration skills and memory. Adequate sleep helps you function at full capacity, improving everything from your reflexes to your decision making abilities. And it’s not just about night-time hours, with research showing that even a nap can improve your performance.
5. You’ll live longer
If you live by the motto “I’ll sleep when I’m dead”, chances are that will happen sooner. Studies have shown that consistently getting too little sleep can shorten your lifespan. Eeek! Specifically, one 2010 study found the likelihood of dying prematurely was 12% higher for those who slept fewer than six hours nightly than for those who slept for six to eight.
6. And have a better immune system
Get struck down with every cold going around? Your sleep habits might be partly to blame. Lack of sleep reduces your immunity, with one 2009 study finding sleeping less than seven hours makes you three times more likely to get a cold than if you average eight hours or more.