Want to make a healthy New Year’s resolution? Try getting more sleep!
Between the demands of our work and family, not to mention our investment in ourselves—namely exercising regularly and eating better—who has time for sleep? Canadians certainly don’t, according to a recent study. Although it’s recommended that adults get as much as eight hours of uninterrupted sleep each night, it turns out a third of us are getting less than seven. The irony is that getting more sleep could actually help us tackle a whole host of healthy New Year’s resolutions. Here’s how getting more sleep can affect your quality of life.
1. Well-rested people perform better.
A report by Stanford Medicine found that two consecutive sleep-deprived nights can negatively impact your performance in all aspects of life. The kicker? That negative impact can last for the next six days!
Can’t seem to sleep? Check out these 7 Home Remedies for Insomnia.
2. Well-rested people have more energy.
This one is obvious, but often overlooked. In our culture, we’re quick to assume that being “too tired” is a lame excuse and that “winners” know how to power through and tackle their goals regardless of how little sleep they’re getting. This is a delusional—and even dangerous—mindset. In the long run, having enough energy is what drives success, and that doesn’t start with finding more motivation or willpower or grit. It starts with getting enough sleep.
Here are 13 Easy Ways to Boost Your Energy!
3. Well-rested people eat better.
Not getting enough sleep does strange things to your hunger hormones. When you’re exhausted, you’re more likely to crave carbs and consume excess calories. Your ability to exercise self-control may also be diminished, leading to poorer food choices. This is partly due to a reduction in leptin (the hormone associated with feeling full) and an overproduction of ghrelin (the hormone that signals hunger).
4. Well-rested people are more likely to exercise.
On the surface, sleep and physical activity may not seem related, but it turns out they’re both part of a healthy cycle. Not only does getting eight hours of sleep at night makes you more likely to engage in physical activity during the day, but moving more during the day increases the likelihood you’ll sleep well at night!
5. Well-rested people handle stressful situations better.
When you’re already tired, you’re that much closer to feeling overwhelmed, more likely to snap at a colleague or loved one, and less equipped to solve problems creatively. Getting enough sleep is crucial to taking life’s daily challenges in stride.
6. Well-rested people sit less.
When you’re feeling tired and sluggish, you naturally want to take things easy. The problem is, this triggers a vicious cycle of inactivity. Studies show that prolonged periods of sitting can actually further drain your energy, leading to sluggish, unproductive days. That’s not an option if you’re going to crush your goals in 2018. Set yourself up to sit less by sleeping more!
Here are 7 Silent Signs You Need to Move More!
7. Well-rested people enjoy better mental health.
Sleep deprivation is undermining the mental health of millions of Canadians. When you don’t get good quality sleep, you have a harder time regulating your emotions, leading to increased anxiety, negative thoughts, and depressive symptoms—all things that can quickly derail your New Year’s resolutions.