Sleep longer, live longer

Many people have no idea that getting enough sleep is essential for helping them stick to a diet, making their workouts more productive or boosting their immune systems.

Is it true that the more you sleep, the longer you live? “Sleep is the most undervalued contributor to optimal health and performance,” says Dr. Keith Humphreys, professor of psychiatry at Stanford University, whose research into addiction treatment and national mental health and drug policy has lead to published articles in the New York Times and other periodicals.

Many people have no idea that getting enough sleep is essential for helping them stick to a diet, making their workouts more productive or boosting their immune systems.

When it comes to dieting, leptin and ghrelin, the two hormones that regulate appetite, are adversely affected by sleep deprivation. Ghrelin, which is produced in the stomach, signals to the brain that it is time to eat. Leptin, on the other hand, is secreted by fat tissue and has the reverse effect, signaling when you are full.

Chronic lack of sleep increases ghrelin, making you feel hungry when you do not really need to eat, and decreases leptin, urging you to keep eating although you have already consumed all the calories you need.

It is also during the deep sleep state that your body repairs itself, including those sore biceps, which benefits your workout routine.

Making a habit of sleep deprivation comes with a heavy price tag. A nine-year study of nearly 7,000 Alameda County, California, residents, found that those who routinely slept six or fewer hours a night had a 70 percent higher risk of dying than did those in the same ages groups who slept seven or eight hours per night.

 

Resource: www.mercola.com and the San Francisco Gate, September 2, 2007.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 26, Number 5, October/November 2007.

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