Tips for sound sleep
Your sleep needs vary widely — total hours required, optimal bedtimes, and ideal wakeup times, these are all dictated by an individual’s physiology, genetics, exercise levels, diet, and age group. Even the habits you formed as a child are influencing bed time habits, but whatever your needs are, getting adequate and effective sleep is crucial for your optimal daily functioning.
What does sleep do for you?
Neuro-science tells us that the space between brain cells increases during sleep, giving the brain the ability to clear toxins. Your brain forms new pathways for memory and knowledge acquisition and consolidates the learnings you accumulated during the day. After a good night’s sleep, you have a greater attention span, make quicker decisions, and are more creative.
Physically, your body uses this time for organ repair — your heart, blood vessels, skeletal muscles, etc. While you are sleeping, your body has the time to produce more white blood cells that are necessary to strengthen and maintain your immune system. Benefits of your daily exercise routine are generated through your sleep cycle. Sleep also regulates hormones related to hunger (ghrelin) and satiety (leptin).
Problems with poor quality sleep
Do you feel hungry late at nights? This comes to no surprise because staying awake late nights will force your sugar cravings through the roof. Your body has its own biological clock, the Circadian rhythm. Sleep and wake times are built into your DNA. Once you force your brain to stay awake longer than it should, you are forcing it to look for a quick source of energy.
Sleep also affects the way insulin is regulated in your body. Imbalances of insulin, ghrelin, leptin, and other hormones can impact metabolism, calorie consumption, and body weight, affecting many aspects of health, wellness, performance, and personality on a day-to-day basis.
Tips for effective sleep
At the end of the day, you are as efficient as your sleep. In order to boost your body and brain performance, sleep is your number one tool to transform into your best self.
Get sunlight by going outside within 30-60 minutes of waking up.Do that again in the late afternoon, prior to sunset. Sunlight on skin promotes serotonin (hormone that promotes calm and focus) which is converted to melatonin (sleep hormone).