Do you love sleep?  Do you feel like you get enough?  If you’re like most people, you answered “yes” to the first question and “no” to the second one.

Think about how you feel after a great night’s sleep.  Do you feel energized?  In a better mood?  Are you more productive?

We all know that sleep is important (and feels oh-so-good).  But what may surprise you are all the great health benefits that a good snooze gives you.  Especially when you get it on a regular basis.  It’s important to your overall wellness, including your heart, mind and weight.

You may already be thinking “Oh, great! So now my lack of sleep is going to literally KILL me.”  No, no… not true.  We just know so much more than we used to about how sleep (or lack of it) affects us.

For your mind, adequate sleep helps to improve your memory.  Dr. Rapoport, MD, Director of the NYU Sleep Disorders Program, said that “If you are trying to learn something, whether it’s physical or mental, you learn it to a certain point with practice, … But something happens while you sleep that makes you learn it better.”  Maybe that’s why kids are such sponges – they sleep so much more than adults!

For your heart and overall physical health, good sleep habits help prevent inflammation, which can cause heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and arthritis.  Lack of sleep can also cause premature aging.  And I know you don’t want that!

Getting enough zzz’s each night can also prevent weight gain.  Yep, it’s true.  I didn’t realize this until I studied to become a Certified Nutritionist.  But the same sections of the brain control both your metabolism and your sleep.  The same hormones that go up in your blood when we are sleepy, also control our appetite (mainly insulin).  So it makes perfect sense!  Also, lack of sleep prevents proper metabolizing of nutrients and slows down fat loss.  If getting rid of some unwanted pounds is on your to-do list, sleep could be the culprit of why they aren’t coming off faster.

Here is an image showing you some of the other effects of sleep deprivation:

For your overall health and wellness, when you begin the day feeling rested, your 5 systems (endocrine, digestive, nervous, cardiovascular and nervous) function much more efficiently.  (There is a lot of physiology and biology that I could go into here, but I if I start on all of that, you’ll be reading a long time.:))  So really, SLEEP IS #1!!!  No wonder we all enjoy it so much and feel so much better physically and mentally after a great night’s sleep!

If you’d like to read more about the benefits of sleep, here is a link to a brief article:  http://thesleepcompanion.com/top-5-benefits-of-sleep/.

To improve the amount of sleep you get on a regular basis, I challenge you to create a sleep schedule that will allow you to go to sleep and wake up around the same time each day.  Try keeping the range +/- one hour.  I’d love to hear from you after you do it, to see how you’re doing and feeling!

And if you think lack of sleep is partially to blame for your weight gain or slow weight loss, let’s talk.  Click here to contact me to schedule your complimentary consultation to discuss how one of my cutting-edge programs can help: https://www.getrealwithjess.com/contact/.

Sleep well, my friends!

Jessica