How Much Sleep Do We Need?
Between the seventh and eighth hour is when we get
almost an hour of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, the time when HGH is released,
the mind repairs itself, grows new connections and puts it all together.
REM sleep occurs about every 90 minutes,
and the periods of REM sleep get longer as the night progresses.
If you're a six-hour sleeper, you're missing that last,
important opportunity to repair and to prepare for the coming day.
Lack of sleep has recently been linked to the rise in obesity;
sleep loss drives down the growth hormone (HGH)
which controls the body's proportions of fat and muscle, as well as the hormone, leptin.
With lower leptin levels your body will crave carbohydrates even though you've had enough to eat.
(University of Chicago)
Establish a regular, relaxing bedtime routine that will allow you to unwind
and send a "signal" to your brain that it's time to sleep.
Follow a sleep routine as regularly as possible, even on the weekends.
Don't read, eat, or watch television in bed.
Your bed should be associated with sleep.
If you can't fall asleep after 30 minutes, don't stay in bed tossing and turning.
Get up and do something that relaxes you,
such as listening to soothing music or reading, until you feel sleepy.
Try to clear your mind; don't use bedtime to solve your daily problems.
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