Recovering The SelfA Journal of Hope and Healing


Sleep Deprivation Problems: Do You Suffer from Them?

Posted on by in Health

Guest Blogger: Joanne Phillips

When it comes to achieving optimal health, experts state that sleep is equally important as proper diet and exercise. Sleep deprivation should be avoided because it can disrupt your circadian system.

Yet, about 35 percent of Americans are getting less than seven hours of sleep, according to data gathered by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Although there is no concrete evidence pointing out what the ideal amount of sleep is, experts suggest that sleeping less than eight hours a night has a number of consequences. Some of these sleep problems are:

  • Unintentional sleeping during the day
  • Drowsy driving – The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that this has resulted in 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries, and more than 100,000 accidents per year.

In addition to this, several studies have presented evidence showing that there is a link between your sleeping habits and your weight.

Sleep-Deprived People are More at Risk for Obesity

People who slept between six to eight hours a day are more likely to lose more weight than those who lacked sleep. Also, people who are sleep-deprived often ate 300 calories more – mainly from junk foods and fast foods.

Dieters who are able to get 8.5 hours of sleep were able to lose 55 percent more body fat than those who only get about 5.5 hours. Greater amounts of accumulated belly fat were found among adults under the age of 40 who slept for five hours or less.

The bottom line is: sleep deprivation alters your metabolism. When you don’t have enough sleep, your levels of leptin, a hormone produced by your body to signal that you are full, drop. Instead, your body’s ghrelin levels rise, and this hormone increases your appetite.

It was also found that the sugar cravings of people who lacked shuteye increased. The reason is that your brain compensates and starts looking for carbohydrates to function well. Carbohydrates often contain glucose, which fuels the brain.

Sleep Deprivation May Also Raise Your Risk Of…

The consequences of sleep deprivation are not only limited to weight problems. There are also other health issues associated with it, such as:

  • Rise in blood sugar – With your cravings for carbohydrates, there is a danger of your blood sugar rising. This raises your chances of contracting diabetes.
  • Accelerated aging
  • Hypertension or high blood pressure
  • Emotional and behavioral problems – Sleep deprivation can inflict changes on your brain activity, which are similar to those experienced by individuals who are suffering from psychiatric disorders.

Chronic insomnia is another serious problem that poses great threat. Research shows that people who have this have a three times greater chance of dying from any cause. One reason is that your body is not allowed to do most of its repairing and healing. This can impair your immune system, leaving you vulnerable against sicknesses.

How to Sleep Better at Night

In order to gauge if you’re having enough sleep is if you are able to wake up in the morning with no problems and feel well-rested. However, if you feel fatigue and find yourself yawning the entire day, you may need to find out how to go to sleep better.

As mentioned before, there are no standard sleep hours, as there are people who feel refreshed after as little as five or six hours of sleep. The best way to find out how much sleep you have is to listen to your body. This will help you to respond properly to your needs.

Experts strongly recommend going to bed as early as possible. Your bodily systems, specifically your adrenals, do most of their repairing process between the hours of 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. Also make sure that your room is set for sleep. Your room should be completely dark and should have a temperature of or below 70 degrees Fahrenheit or 21 degrees Celsius.

About the Author

Joanne Phillips is a bit of an expert when it comes to sleep problems, since most of her insomnia articles are based from experience. She suffered from chronic insomnia for about four years. Before her recovery, she worked irregular shifts, which took a toll on his health. Apart from producing “sleep” articles, Joanne Phillips also writes about topics related to diet and fitness.

Also read the article for getting info on sleeping better.

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0 thoughts on “Sleep Deprivation Problems: Do You Suffer from Them?”

  1. Joanne Phillips says:

    Thank you very much, Ernest!

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