Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Why Getting Enough Sleep Is Important


For years, when my kids were little, I was sleep deprived. I was barely able to squeeze in 4 or 5 hours a night then. Between everything that needed to be done and a sick baby, I was always exhausted. The effects of very little sleep caused me to become sick. I always had a virus or some type of infection, and it was so hard for me to lose weight. Then, I didn’t realize that sleep alters our immune system and our whole body. 

Now it seems as if a lack of sleep is some badge of honor. We have conditioned ourselves to sleep less so we can do more. Then to combat the lack of sleep, we often drink tons of caffeine and sugar to compensate. Only it doesn’t. Steady streams of caffeine might help us make it through the day, but it doesn’t give us the same benefits as sleep. 

Long term sleep deprivation has serious side effects on our body, and is linked to certain diseases.

  1. Diabetes
  2. Heart disease
  3. Cancer 
  4. Alzheimers
  5. Decreased immune function 
  6. Depression

When we sleep, our bodies heal. If I understand it correctly, it also organizes our brain and declutters it. It helps us to figure things out. Sometimes when I work all day on projects or speaking engagements, I become so exhausted mentally. No amount of caffeine can help me. But a power nap or meditation energizes me. 

We need to always listen to our bodies and do what we can to help ourselves. Now I am very protective of my sleep. I make it a priority to go to bed early enough to get in my required sleep. If I don’t my whole day feels wasted. I am not creative or able to concentrate. 

Even though we may try, sometimes it’s just not possible to get enough sleep. In those cases, meditation might be helpful. According to Dr. Mercola, twenty minutes of meditation is equivalent to a 1.5 hour nap. Meditation has helped me so much. It helps me to relax and to not feel overwhelmed. I have apps for guided meditation. But I am also learning how to do it myself, with music and deep breathing. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend it. 

Have a wonderful day!

Love and blessings, 

Candida

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