Just How Important Is Sleep?
We all hear over and over of how vital our diet is aswell as regular exercise. But is the most important message of our sleep being covered with the same regularity?
At GymPro, we think not, so we’re hear to remind ourselves of the reasons why its imperative that we get good quality sleep and the benefits for doing so.
It can be argued that the three pillars of our lives, Sleep, Exercise and Diet, carry equal weight in terms of our health. And one cannot be affected without affecting the others. Without good sleep, we make bad nutritional decisions and therefore endure inefficient exercise, and visa versa. So really we want you to start taking a more holistic approach to your sleep and try and think carefully about all three. Because whilst all three areas are easy to pay attention to, they are just as easy to neglect. But for now lets really concentrate on our shut eye!
Sleep consists of five stages.
- Stage 0- Awake
- Stages 1-2 – Light Sleep
- Stages 3-4 – Deep Sleep
- Stage 5 – REM Sleep
It is during REM sleep where our most vivid dreams take place, and is important for memory and mood. Light sleep makes up most of your night and promotes restoration, whilst deep sleep aids learning and memory. If you feel extra refreshed, it’s likely you got lots of deep sleep last night!
So how do we get in these deep restorative sleeping patterns regularly?
Well as we’ve previously mentioned, the big players are our diet and regular exercise. Other factors, especially in our modern lifestyles are the dreaded blue light exposure (mobile devices and tablet/laptop use before bedtime) aswell as lack of natural sunlight (stuck indoors and in office space with artificial lighting). The sun plays a huge part in our health and moreover our sleep cycles. It is important to get as much natural light exposure to the body as possible to help regulate our sleep hormones.
Heres a short list of sleep hacks to help improve your sleep quality.
- Open a window to improve air quality.
- Pop a magnesium supp to help improve sleep.
- Cherry juice has been proven to help improve sleep.
- Swap tea and coffee for camomile tea before bed.
- Exercising for 150 min per week improves sleep quality by 65%.
- Reading before bed can promote improved sleep.
- Vitamin D supp (with k2) can help you gain an extra 45min quality sleep per night.
- Having a pet in the bedroom has proven to help comfort and get into deeper sleep.
Sleeping is the body’s way of achieving rest and restoration. It affects our mental aswell as physical well being and is an incredibly effective method of helping us better deal with stress, to recover from illness and to solve problems.
Here a short list of some of the major benefits of getting good quality sleep.
- Lower risk of strokes, Alzheimer’s and heart disease.
- Improved concentration and productivity.
- Lower risk of type 2 Diabetes.
- Improved performance.
- Improved immune function.
- Better Memory.
- Insert image
At GymPro we want everyone to take a moment to think about our health and the amount and quality of our sleep we’re all getting. If we can use this time to create some small, positive habits that can contribute to better sleep, that in turn we now know will contribute to better dietary decisions that will then allow us to exercise better and for longer. Then surely we owe it to ourselves to do so? After all, if there’s one thing we all can agree on. There’s really nothing better than a good nights sleep!
Still struggling with your sleep? There’s some great tips and more information on the links below.