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Health Benefits of A Good Night’s Sleep

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Here are 4 health benefits of getting a good night’s sleep.  Researchers recommend adults aim for 7-9 hours of sleep each night.

smiley face1. A stronger immune system

Skimping on sleep can compromise your immune system. An article in the journal Sleep reported that sleep deprivation had the same effect on the immune system as physical stress—such as from an illness or surgery, or grieving for a loved one.

2. Younger skin

Researchers at Cornell University found that one night of sleep deprivation may cause your skin to lose elasticity, firmness and moisture. It also makes fine lines and wrinkles more noticeable.

3. Healthier heart

When it comes to heart health, research definitely supports the need for a good snooze. Adults who regularly sleep less than six hours a night have an increased risk of heart attacks and of developing high blood pressure compared to those who sleep 7 to 8 hours per night.

4. Trimmer waist

If you sleep enough, you can lose weight. Plenty of research confirms that adults who sleep less than six hours a night are at higher risk of being overweight. According to a study at the University of Colorado, the effect of sleep may be even more powerful than we realized. This study indicates that even just a few sleepless nights in a row can cause almost-instant weight gain. Participants gained on average two pounds after one week of five-hour nights.  One reason for this weight gain is because a lack of sleep increases hunger and appetite by decreasing levels of the hormone that tells us we’ve eaten enough. It also increases levels of a hormone that signals the body to eat. Lack of sleep also ramps up our craving for high-fat, high-carbohydrate foods.

Information for this article taken from EatingWell.com

 

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