Most of us have heard that doing sports can help to improve our sleep quality but did you know that sleep also helps you to get fit? Getting more and better quality sleep really can help you improve your athletic performance, regardless of your level and preferred sport. Research shows that sleeping better can help you improve your speed, accuracy and reaction time when doing sports. In an experiment conducted at Stanford University the college’s basketball team slept on average 2 hours per night longer over the period of a few months. The added hours really paid off on the court, both in the team’s results and their mood.
HOW SLEEP HELPS TO WEED OUT IRRELEVANT INFORMATION
Modern technology has many benefits but it can be bad for our brains. Every day we receive information not only face-to-face at work or with friends, but through our smart phones and computers. Facebook, Twitter and online platforms constantly feed us with fact and pseudo facts forcing our brains to multi-task.
GOING TO BED IS ONE OF THE MOST EFFECTIVE WAYS TO MAINTAIN OUR HEALTH AND LONGEVITY
When we sleep our immune system performs preventive maintenance which is key to our health, wellbeing and longevity. The effects of significant sleep deprivation mimic many of the hallmarks of ageing. Yet still four in ten people aren’t getting enough sleep, while one in five sleep poorly most nights—making sleep problems the second most common health complaint after pain.
SKIPPING SLEEP VS. GETTING DRUNK—WHAT MAKES FOR A WORSE DAY AT THE OFFICE?
There are more similarities between being sleepy and being drunk than we might realise. Though most of us would not show up at the office intoxicated, we might not be so careful when it comes to getting enough sleep. To be mentally sharp and alert we need sleep. Sleep loss impacts neurocognitive functions like short-term memory and more complex mental tasks such as multi-tasking, decision-making and problem-solving in much the same way as alcohol does.
Make sleep a priority in 2018 and you’ll reap the benefits all year round
It’s that time again—a time not just to recover from the excesses of the holiday season but also to think about the positive steps we can take to make the year ahead one of our best yet. Losing weight, doing more exercise, keeping healthy, staying relaxed and being more successful at work are just some of the most popular New Year’s resolutions.
THE RIGHT FOOD AND DRINKS CAN MAKE YOUR NIGHTS A DREAM
What we eat and drink can have a big impact on our sleep quality. Most of us know that drinking coffee in the afternoon/evening can make it more difficult for us to fall asleep but there are many other types of food and drink that either make us sleepy or keep us awake.
SLEEP BETTER BY MAINTAINING THE RIGHT TEMPERATURE FOR SLEEP
Our sleep is closely linked to the circadian rhythm of our body’s core temperature. Without our body undergoing the necessary temperature changes we cannot fall asleep and if our body is not at the right temperature throughout the night our sleep quality will suffer. To fall asleep our core temperature needs to drop and our skin temperature needs to increase.
Ever woken up in the night to find yourself totally sweaty? Damp, clammy and your sleepwear and sheets soaked through? You’re not alone. A study has shown that a third of patients visiting their local doctor complained of night sweats. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg; how many others of us are suffering from night sweats that we haven’t reported?
WHAT NOBEL PRIZE-WINNERS CAN TELL US ABOUT SLEEP AND OUR HEALTH
This has been a week to celebrate for Nobel prize-winners Jeffrey Hall, Michael Rosbash and Michael Young but an unpleasant wake-up call for those suffering from sleep deprivation. The prize-winners’ research shows that sleep, and sleeping well at night, are key to our health and wellbeing.
CAN SLEEPING LONGER AT THE WEEKEND HELP YOU LOSE WEIGHT?
Sleeping in at the weekend is scientifically proven to reduce the risk of weight gain; offering yet another reason to stay in bed longer! Regardless of how much we sleep during the week getting some extra sleep at the weekend is linked with a lower BMI. Sleep disturbances and a lack of sleep has been clearly connected with increased body weight.