While it’s clearly proven that sleep has a major impact on the inner workings of the brain, sleep also has a tremendous impact on your overall health. Not only will missing out on your zz’s leave you feeling sluggish, sleep deprivation can also put you at a much higher risk for chronic diseases including obesity and diabetes.
As some chronic diseases are integrally linked with your body’s hormone production, modern day sleep deprivation is a serious concern. A Medscape.com study entitled, “The Impact of Sleep Deprivation on Hormones and Metabolism,” depicts a significant decrease in how many hours Americans are sleeping.
In 1960, a survey of 1 million people reported a sleeping duration of 8.0-8.9 hours; in the early 2000’s, that number had dropped to 6.9-7.0 hours.
Though those fifty years saw some of the greatest technological, financial, and social advances of our time, as a society, we haven’t prioritized taking care of our most valuable resource- our self! We’re working more, sleeping almost two hours less, and multitasking every minute to complete a never ending list list of tasks and to-dos.
Ignoring your physical and spiritual needs isn’t wise- especially when your health is at serious risk. According to experts, the production of some hormones increase during sleep while others are restricted. This interruption to your hormonal production can result in chronic conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and other serious health concerns.
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In the study, “The Impact of Sleep Deprivation on Hormones and Metabolism,” researchers investigate how sleep affects the release of these much-needed hormones:
In studies of animals who are faced with a food shortage, researchers consistently see decreased sleep durations and noticeable increases in caloric intake. To keep them fueled for long hours of wakefulness, animals’ hormones signal a stronger need for nourishment during times of scarcity.
Similarly, the above, human studies have further shown that sleep duration and the production of hormones which regulate appetite are closely linked. Therefore, not getting adequate sleep has a direct correlation with an excessive increase in appetite even if we are not experiencing a time of famine!
While society might not prioritize your health and wellness, you can! Take control of your life today and start living with intention to find greater purpose, wellness, and peace.