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Sleep plays a vital role in our physical, mental, and emotional health. We spend about one-third of their lives sleeping, but it needs to be good sleep to help us function and fulfill our passions and purpose. In today’s busy world, it’s tough to get a good night’s sleep, but experts and medical professionals warn that both quantity and quality sleep are musts and recommend scheduling your sleep time like you do your work and activities. But just how much sleep do you really need? And how can you improve your sleep habits?
The National Sleep Foundation spent two years researching how much sleep people need at different stages of life. Eighteen experts reviewed more than 300 scientific studies and created a sleep chart with recommended hours of sleep throughout your lifetime. These leading specialists formulated a chart that contains minimum and maximum ranges of sleep for good health. Here’s what they came up with:
The sleep study showed these recommended hours can vary depending on individual genetics and temperaments. The experts say you should determine what works best for you by focusing on how you feel when you get varying amounts of sleep.
There are many benefits of a good night’s sleep. Sleep deprivation takes a heavy toll on health. Although doctors and researchers are not exactly sure why, studies have shown that sleep deprivation negatively affects blood circulation. One factor in cardiovascular health is getting enough sleep.
Good sleep also helps you from becoming overweight. How? Sleep deprivation creates a drop in your brain’s leptin levels, and leptin is the brain chemical that tells your body when it is full. Without enough leptin production, you may overeat.
The right amount of sleep improves your memory. Sleep solidifies the memories you made during the day and helps you retain the information you learned. Basically, our moms were right whey they said to go to bed early before those big exams.
Sleep helps the body maintain homeostasis and lower levels of C-reactive protein, so there is less inflammation that can lead to heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and stroke. Some studies show that people who get fewer than six hours of sleep each night are at greater risk for heart attacks.
Sleep gives your body more stamina and improves athletic function. Studies of athletes such as football players and swimmers show that those who tried to sleep at least 10 hours each night for 7 to 8 weeks straight had more stamina and less fatigue during the day.
CBD is one natural way that may help you get better sleep. CBD helps your body’s natural endocannabinoid receptors engage. These receptors help your body remain in homeostasis, meaning a healthy state with no inflammation. Inflammation in the body can create anxiety and pain, both of which affect the quality and quantity of your sleep.
At least one of the brain’s endocannabinoids also affects your body’s sleep cycle, so if CBD reacts with that endocannabinoid, it could help you sleep better. Studies are still being done on all of CBD’s effects, but many users report the non-habit forming, hemp-based oil realty improves their sleep.
There are many factors that can interfere with good sleep. The first thing to know is that our bodies have a built-in circadian rhythm, an instinctive awareness of night and day based on light. However, we often “trick” those rhythms by not getting enough bright light during the day and creating environments with too much light at night. The bottom line? Get outside more during the day and make sure you turn down the lights as much as you can in the hours before bedtime. Experts also recommend sticking to a consistent sleep schedule, even on weekends, for optimal sleep.
Diet and exercise play a big role in sleep patterns. Daily exercise increases your ability to sleep. Experts also say to restrict liquids in the evening so your sleep is not broken up by frequent trips to the restroom. Try not to eat late at night or drink alcohol or ingest caffeine. Eating right before sleep interferes with the body’s ability to produce melatonin, as do alcohol and caffeine consumption.
Set the stage for a good night’s sleep by creating a calm environment with soothing music, essential oils, soft lighting, and a comfortable mattress and pillow. Make sure all electronics are turned off. Clear your mind of your to-do lists and worries. Put your cares aside in preparation for sleep by spending time in prayer. Surrender your schedule, relationships, duties, and anxieties to the Lord; and read Psalms of praise to calm your spirit. One good Bible verse to repeat at night is Proverbs 3:24 (NIV), which says, “When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.”
Finally, if you snore, experience sleep apnea, have frequent insomnia, or restless legs or leg cramps at night, tell your medical professional. Ask if a sleep study would benefit you, so you can gauge the quantity and quality of sleep you are getting. Track your sleep habits for a couple of weeks and take these with you to your doctor.
By making changes to your eating and drinking habits, exercising more, scheduling your sleep time, setting the right atmosphere, and adding CBD oil to your routine, you may experience the best sleep of your life. Before making any changes to your health habits, it is always best to consult with your doctor or other medical professional.
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