Sleeping well is one of the most essential things we can do to stay healthy. After all, we spend 30% of our lives in bed so it must be important.
Yet, so many people don’t take their sleep seriously and think it is simply unproductive to sleep the recommended 7 to 8 hours per day. Many people simply reach for the coffee or supplements to ward off the sleepy feeling. Instead of using supplements to stay awake, we should be using things like CBD to help us sleep. (Rave Reviews guide to CBD can give you some suggestions on which is best for sleep.)
What happens when we don’t sleep enough? It doesn’t just make us groggy. It also affects us physically.
In this article, I will go over what happens to our body when we don’t get enough sleep.
1 - Digestion
Sleep is so vital to digestion and metabolism that when you are sleep deprived, you risk gaining weight. Two hormones, leptin and ghrelin, are affected by your sleep and they control your feeling of fullness and hunger in general. When you are sleep deprived, these hormones don’t work well and you feel hungry.
When you overeat you also start having a myriad of other health problems. First, you end up too tired to exercise and the weight keeps building. Then, your insulin production is also disturbed and is increased when you are tired. This also leads to overeating and can even increase your odds of getting diabetes.
2 - Central nervous system
Being sleep deprived stunts some of the processes in your brain that keeps your central nervous system functioning well. Signals that are needed to be sent throughout the body are interrupted and this affects your thoughts and psychology.
Anxiety is greatly increased as a result and this can lead to other psychological problems like depression. Depressed people are at much greater risk of contracting diseases as their immune system is also affected by the disruption to their central nervous system.
There is even a possibility of falling asleep during the day, not just because you are overtired, but due to the disruption of certain signals to your brain caused by your sleep deprivation.
3 - Weak immune system
When we sleep, our body produces cytokines. These are substances that fight off bacteria and viruses and keep us healthy. When we lack sleep, we also end up producing less cytokines and as a result can open ourselves up to catching more illnesses.
In a nutshell, when we sleep we build up the defences necessary for a strong immune system. Not enough sleep and we weaken it.
4 - Endocrine system
We rely on so many hormones that all have their particular function. When we sleep, these hormones all are released so they can help our body do what it needs to do.
Testosterone is an example. Without a deep sleep, not enough is produced. This can affect everything from your hair growth, to muscle repair.