Published: 11/11/2014 - Updated: 11/11/2018
Author: MSc. Miriam Reyes
Rest is fundamental in order to feel good and complete day to day obligations. At the end of our lives, we will have spent around 33% of our time sleeping, even though geniuses like Leonardo da Vinci consider it a waste of time, I am assuring you now that it isn’t.
Relationship between sleep and health
The relationships between sleep and the body is scientifically proven, which is why it is a very important factor in being healthy and sane.
Cells take advantage of this time while sleeping to perform mitosis, which is how tissues are regenerated. It is especially important that this be done daily, especially the cells in the cardiac system.
The brain, one the other hand, stores information that was accumulated throughout the day and decides what becomes part of long-term memory,making sleep a key element in learning.
That’s how a study performed by doctors Phyllis C. Zee and Fred W. Turek, from the Neurology department at Northwestern University in San Francisco, proved that sleep alterations could accentuate some medical and psychiatric problems.
“This bidirectional relation has a clear example in metabolic, cardiovascular and respiratory illnesses, as well as in chronic pain or depression”.
How to make sure you sleep well
Not leaving a dream cycle incomplete upon awakening is even more important than sleeping an hour more or less, as Dr. Borras, of the Clinical Hospital of Barcelona explains. A sleep cycle is completed after moving through the five stages of sleep: falling asleep, light sleep, transition, deep sleep, and REM (at which time dreams occur).
One complete sleep cycle lasts approximately ninety minutes, depending on the individual, which means that within seven and a half hour one will have completed five sleep cycles. If you have noticed that some days you way up fresh and active while on other days, even after having slept more hours, you wake up tired and mentally sluggish, it could be that you woke up before a sleep cycle was completed, which will affect you for the rest of the day.
That why understanding how you sleep and paying attention to how your cycles function will help you get better rest and to wake up with more energy.
Sleep is undoubtedly a health indicator; a sufficient amount of sleep along with good quality sleep should be considered to be indispensable elements in a healthy lifestyle, in the same way that exercise and nutrition are, according to comparative study by the Sleep Institute in Kensington, London.
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Revised by: Dra. Loredana Lunadei on 11/11/2018
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