Wellness

Sleep: Why Getting Enough is Imperative

Aurora from 'Maleficent', the Disney movie adaptation of Sleeping Beauty

Elle Fanning stars as Aurora in Disney’s Maleficent. In theatres May 30

We're meant to spend about a third of our life sleeping, and doing just that is crucial for a number of health and beauty reasons. Here's a look at why it's important to get enough quality sleep.

  • Under-eye circles: Looking to erase under-eye circles? There is nothing more effective than getting enough sleep.
     
  • Weight gain: Studies have shown that sleep deprived people eat an average of 300 more calories a day. Worse yet, according to The New York Times, depriving people of sleep for just one night created pronounced changes in the way their brains responded to high-calorie junk foods.
     
  • Slower metabolism: The stress that is put on your body because of lack of sleep causes your body's metabolism to slow down, thereby causing weight gain as your body stores more fat.
     
  • Getting the right amount of sleep will help you live longer: Researchers from the University of California, San Diego found that sleeping less than five hours on average may shorten your lifespan. 
     
  • Slowed down ability to respond/reason: When you're deprived of sleep you are less likely to be able to control your impulses and make rational judgements. It has also been shown to lead to heightened feelings of crankiness.
     
  • More anxiety: REM sleep allows the brain to calm down and "reset," so when you're depriving yourself of sleep, you may experience exaggerated responses to stressful situations.
     
  • You're likely to get sick more often: The immune system, which fights infections, is greatly affected by how much sleep you're getting, making people who don't sleep enough particularly susceptible to cold viruses.
     
  • It shrinks your brain: People who are chronically sleep deprived have been shown to have smaller, less-dense brains, which affects key parts of the neurological systems like decision-making.
     
  • Higher risk of disease: From high blood pressure and cholesterol to diabetes, the risk of getting countless diseases goes up when you are consistently not sleeping enough.
     
  • You are less likely to get to the gym: When you don't sleep enough, you lack energy, which makes it more likely that workouts will be missed.

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