Estimated reading time: 2 minute(s)
Have you ever noticed how peacefully a child sleeps? It seems so simple, right? Yet it is so complicated for many adults who suffer from insomnia, a pathology that is becoming more and more common these days. It’s estimated, according to the World Sleep Society, that up to 45% of the world’s population has trouble falling asleep.
A biological necessity
When we make a list of our most vital needs, we talk about breathing and the need for food and water, but what about sleep? We can’t forget that as humans we couldn’t last more than 10 days without sleep.
Sleeping well balances the body and calms the organism, it also recharges us with energy to face a new day with new challenges, because when we are asleep is when our cells and tissues regenerate and get reconstructed.
Answer me this- how do you feel after a bad night’s sleep? Bad, right? It doesn’t matter how healthy you’ve eaten- you don’t feel good.
Sleeping well and getting enough rest is just as, if not more, important than eating a healthy diet
How much sleep do you need?
Experts say that, as a general rule, an adult needs to sleep between 7 and 9 hours a day.
It’s also important to emphasize the quality of sleep. It’s not the same to sleep peacefully, in a pleasant environment with no noise, than to wake up every two hours, something that keeps you from reaching the REM phase of sleep, which is critical if you want to enjoy the feeling of having had a restful rest the next day.
What happens if you don’t sleep well?
Going beyond the typical feelings of tiredness, irritability and moodiness that we have all suffered at some time or another in our life; not getting enough sleep can cause major problems in our daily life:
- Attention deficit: according to Matthew Walker’s data, an English scientist who specializes in sleep- lack of sleep at night results in a 40% decrease in learning and memorization abilities. He even goes as far as to say that a lack of sleep is connected to an increased risk of suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.
- Increased risk of suffering a heart attack: Matthew Walker’s studies are very revealing. Did you know that when the clocks change in spring and we lose an hour of sleep due to the time change, cases of heart attacks increase by 24% the next day?! Not to mention that in autumn, when we get an hour more of sleep, cases of heart attacks decrease by 21%? Interesting, right?
- Increased risk of accident: According to a study published in the journal, Nature, after a person goes 24 hours without sleep, cognitive and motor performance are equal to that of someone who has had five alcoholic beverages.
- Increased likelihood of being Overweight: Lack of sleep unbalances Ghrelin and Leptin, two hormones related to satiety and appetite. Another study carried out by Stanford University (USA) states that people who sleep less than 5 hours a day have a 3.6% higher BMI (Body Mass Index).
- Increased risk of catching a cold and other illnesses: this is because when we sleep an insufficient number of hours the activity of our immune system lowers up to 70% , meaning we are totally unprotected against external agents. This makes us very susceptible to illnesses. There are already studies linking a lack of sleep to cancer.
The WHO has classified night shifts as carcinogenic because it disrupts natural sleep cycles and deprives people of adequate rest
Pathologies related to Insomnia:
- Premature Aging
- Fertility Problems
- Cognitive Issues
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Chronic Fatigue