Research shows that only 30% of Americans are getting enough sleep nightly. Only 5% are sleeping too much. That leaves 65% of the American population sleep deprived. How well are you sleeping?
You may be thinking I get enough sleep. I only need ____ hours of sleep per night.
The National Institutes of Health suggests that school-age children need at least 10 hours of sleep daily, teens need 9-10 hours, and adults need 7-8 hours. The average American is sleeping 5 hours per night. Studies show we need to sleep more.
Did you know that five-hours-a-night sleep habits have been tied to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, heart attacks, obesity, and depression?
10 Signs You Need More Sleep
- Always Hungry- If the brain is not getting enough sleep it will look for more energy. It has been found that when you sleep less you increase more ghrelin, also known as the hunger hormone. This hormone makes your body crave fatty and sugary foods. You also produce less leptin, the satiety hormone.
- Weight Gain- A 2012 study in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that just four and a half hours of sleep for four days straight can reduce your fat cells’ ability to respond to insulin by 30%. Sleep deprivation may cause insulin resistance, which then leads to Type II Diabetes.
- More Impulsive- Lack of sleep in children and adults has shown a decrease in making good decisions and more like likely to act out.
- Brain Fog- Getting enough sleep is crucial for brain health. Research from the National Institutes of Health shows sleep helps clear toxic molecules from the brain. Toxic brain= foggy brain.
- Decreased Time Management- A 2009 study in Sleep found that when people had less than 8 hours of sleep they were able to manage their time less and got less work done. Those with 8 hours or more improved their time management skills by 4.3%.
- Emotional- You become more over-reactive to things that normally don’t bother you. More anxiety, sadness and anger may be seen. Some may show the opposite signs of slap-happy and giddy.
- Decreased Immune System- Lack of sleep decreases you body’s ability to fight off infections. A 2009 study in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that those who got less than 7 hours of sleep were nearly three times more likely to develop a cold than those who slept eight hours or more a night. Why? Your body produces cytokines while you sleep, they are the proteins that help protect against infection and inflammation.
- Poor Skin Health-They call sleep- beauty rest for a reason. A 2013 clinical trial conducted at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio, found that skin recovery was 30% higher in those who had good quality sleep over those with poor sleep. “A lack of sleep upsets your hormonal balance and elevates circulating estrogen levels,” says Debra Jaliman, MD, a New York City-based dermatologist. Not only can you expect more breakouts when you skip out on rest, your skin may also appear older. “If done for long periods, you will see that you have excess wrinkling probably from a decrease in collagen,” Dr. Jaliman says. “The body produces it while you’re sleeping.”
- Increased Chronic Pain- Many studies have shown a link between sleep loss and lower pain threshold, this pain and decreased sleep cycle continues to go round and round. Many have found working on the sleep has helped decrease the pain.
- Increased Risk of Injury-Motor skills are decreased with less sleep, this may increase your chance of falling, slipping or even cutting yourself when chopping vegetables. The Institute of Medicine estimates that one out of five auto accidents in the U.S. results from drowsy driving-that’s about 1 million crashes a year.
Putting It All Together
So, are you getting enough sleep? If you are getting a regular 8 hours of sleep per night and have any of the above signs then it may be something else causing those issues. However, if you are always hungry, gaining weight, impulsive, have brain fog, difficulty managing your time and emotional then you may want to look at your sleep habits as a cause. Find that you or your children are getting sick more often or skin problems that won’t go away? Then you may want to look at sleep habits too. What about increased pain or decreased balance and motor skills? Could it be that you are not getting enough sleep?
Sleep is an important part of living a more proactive lifestyle. If you know that sleep is an issue for you, but just not sure how to improve your sleep habits then I highly recommend our Growing E-Course, we go into more detail about sleep and tools to help you get a good nights rest. If you would like to check out Day #19 one of the emails that focuses on sleep please click here. If you would like to take part in our Free Growing E-Course click here.
If you are interested in how proactive you are currently living then I invite you to take the Wellness Quiz to find out your Wellness Score.
***If you are interested in learning more about When You Snooze, You Lose comment below. I have a fun and information packed online Facebook Class that talks about this very topic.
I am enjoying this write 31 days challenge and I hope that you are finding these tips beneficial to living a more proactive lifestyle.
If you would like to learn more tips, click on the box. I will be adding tips daily.
Shawna Cale, Got-Oils? Administrator
I am a M.O.M: Mom on a Mission to help educate and empower other mom’s to build healthy homes and bodies, and have the energy to do the things they enjoy with their families.