8 Health Benefits of Sleep
Like eating nutritious food, drinking water, and exercising regularly, getting quality sleep is an important component of overall health. While sleeping, the body performs a number of repairing and maintaining processes that affect nearly every part of the body. As a result, a good night’s sleep, or a lack of sleep, can impact the body both mentally and physically.
Sleep restores the body and improves energy levels, so waking up well-rested can have a positive impact on an individual’s mood
Quality sleep promotes cardiac health. During sleep, heart rate slows down, and blood pressure decreases.
Regulated Blood Sugar
Sleep impacts the body’s relationship with the hormone insulin.
Improved Mental Function
Sleep is believed to help with memory and cognitive thinking. Brain plasticity theory, a major theory on why humans sleep, posits that sleep is necessary so the brain can grow, reorganize, restructure, and make new neural connections.
Restored Immune System
Restorative theories of sleep suggest that sleep restores and repairs the body, making people feel refreshed in the morning. During sleep, the body produces growth hormones necessary for development in children and adolescents. These growth hormones also repair tissues and cells in people of all ages. The body also produces cytokines during sleep, which support the immune system in fighting infections.
Getting appropriate sleep each night can help manage stress.
Sleep is a key element of athletic recovery and the body's production of growth hormones is highest during sleep.
Maintaining Healthy Weight
Quality sleep, in addition to exercise, stress management, and healthy eating choices, is an important part of maintaining a healthy weight.