Sleep: Why is it important and how much do we really need?

Sleep: Why is it important and how much do we really need?
Resting and sleep are just as important to our wellbeing as drinking, eating, and breathing. The science of sleep has been studied for many years, and as such, there are many similar and different reasons why our bodies need sleep.
One such theory from Harvard University is that during sleep our body is allowed to restore and reset itself. According to the report, animals who were deprived of sleep lose all immune function and die in just a matter of weeks. It is also believed that sleep helps to restore muscle growth, protein synthesis, and tissue repair, and certain growth hormones will only release during sleep! It is no argument that most individuals will say they feel refreshed and just overall ‘better’ after a good night’s sleep.

So how many hours of sleep should we strive for each day?

According to the National Sleep Foundation it is advised that healthy adults need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night. Babies, young children, and teens need even more sleep to enable their growth and development. People over 65 should also get 7 to 8 hours per night.

Tips to help you get a good night’s rest

  1. Cell phones and TV OFF! Your brain is not allowed to shut down from external stimuli, thus will not reach its full capacity to reset and heal. It is best to not have a TV in your bedroom, limit the amount of light you have, and turn off / mute your cell phone one hour before bed.
  2. Hot drink, preferably an herbal tea or lemon water. Having a cup of herbal tea an hour before bed provides you with a calming effect. Certain herbs will also contribute to making you sleepy, including chamomile (which releases an antioxidant called apigenin, which decreases anxiety and stress), lavender, ashwagandha, and cinnamon.
  3. Lower the temperature in your room. Since your body cools down as you sleep, it is best to set the thermostat a little lower as you prep for sleep.
  4. Read. Doesn’t matter what you read (as long as it is not an electronic as the blue light decreases melatonin release).
  5. Practice meditation mindfulness. Did you know that meditation can enhance melatonin levels in your body which helps you fall asleep? Practice gentle breathing and listen to a guided meditation to help you fall asleep.
  6. Use aromatherapy. A simple answer to get the aromatherapy for a restful night’s sleep is a blend in our Sleep Easy Pillow Mist. Simply mist on your pillow before you lay down and breathe in deeply.
Creating your own before bed ritual will help you build consistency and a better sleeping pattern, which will then lead to better health, less stress, and a stronger immune system.

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