Just like a phone refuses to work and demands charging when out of battery, so does the human body. Alas! We fail to recognise the symptoms of an “out of battery human body” and continue to stretch it as much as we can. The end results are obvious. A body loosing on power and immunity working only on medicines and supplements.
The western lifestyle is damaging us more than we could imagine. Compared to the past, the sleep people get, is less in duration as well as quality. Here are few ways in which lack of sleep affects us.
- It increases our tendency of putting on weight and getting obese. This is because we eat more while staying up at night.
- Staying up at night increases ‘ghrelin’ which stimulates appetite and decreases ‘leptin’ which supresses it.
- It makes one prone to develop hypertension as it upsets the levels of stress hormones in the body.
- Stimulation of appetite increases our cravings for carbohydrates and high sugar foods, increasing our propensity to develop diabetes type 2.
- Lack of adequate sleep decreases our ability to workout and exercise, worsening our health.
- It reduces our ability to concentrate and solve problems as insomnia depresses our nervous system.
- It reduces our speed, accuracy, endurance and athletic performance.
- Due to adverse effects on diet and exercise, it leads to heart diseases and stroke.
- Inadequate sleep compromises immunity. During sleep, our body releases certain cytokines which help us in fighting infection and inflammation, thus contributing to a healthy immunity.
- Lack of sleep affects our emotions and thinking, thus aggravating depression.
So, for all the above reasons and many more, a good quality sleep is of paramount importance. Along with diet and exercise, it forms the foundation of a healthy and prosperous human life. Six to eight hours should be the adequate duration. This is the time our body needs to replenish its reserves and get prepared for a new action, packed day.