The New Year is just around the corner and it’s likely you already have some of your New Year’s Resolutions in mind. For many of us, the new year will mark the beginning of a new fitness program, healthier food choices, or a commitment to be more productive at work. All are great goals and all of these have one thing in common: they’re all affected by how well you’re sleeping at night.
Studies show that we spend up to one-third of our lives sleeping, but only 21% of Americans are actually getting the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep each night. The lack of proper sleep makes it more difficult to reach your short and long term goals. Keep reading to find out why getting a good night’s sleep should be at the center of your New Year’s Resolutions.
We all know that a good night’s rest sets you up to be more energetic the next day. This becomes extremely important when beginning a new fitness regimen. One of the most popular new year resolutions is to become more active and to exercise more. Making sure that you’re getting proper sleep will make you more likely to stick with your goal and avoid skipping the gym because you don’t have the energy.
If your goal is to shed some pounds this year and stick to healthier eating habits, getting a good night’s sleep just might be the ace in your back pocket. This is because when you’re well rested, you are less hungry. Sleep deprivation interferes with important hormones that regulate your hunger and appetite. A study from The University of Colorado found that when participants only averaged about 5 hours of sleep at night in just 1 week participants gained an average of 2 pounds. Although a good night’s rest alone won’t help you lose weight, it will make it easier to walk past the vending machine filled with a variety of unhealthy options.
If your resolution this year is to finally get that long awaited promotion at work, then making sleep a priority is crucial. Getting a good night’s rest impacts your ability to perform on the job more than you realize. Studies show that there is a strong correlation between sleep deprivation and a decrease in productivity at work. When you wake up feeling rested and refreshed, you’re more focused, you're better able to problem solve, and able to interact with co-workers and clients better.
Aside from the daily benefits of getting a good night’s sleep, getting a proper night’s rest can help you decrease your risk of developing serious health problems. Studies have shown that sleep deprivation is linked with cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and some types of cancer
Maybe your resolution this year is to improve your mental health and overall happiness. Getting a good night’s rest helps to combat depression, irritability, and your overall mood. Researchers have correlated a lack of sleep with an increased risk of developing depression. So if improving your mood and mental health this year is on your list of goals be sure to prioritize your sleep. In doing so you’ll wake up feeling refreshed and have a more positive outlook on life.
One of the most popular New Year's resolutions is to improve relationships with those closest to you. Getting a good night’s rest can help you do just that. When you’re tired and running on empty, it is easier to be more snappy and less patient with others. But when you’re feeling well rested, your ability to pick up on important social cues and interact with others greatly improves.
Your immune system is constantly working to ward off sickness and infection. Sleep deprivation changes the way your immune system functions reducing its ability to fight off harmful germs and bacteria. Getting a good night’s rest just might help your immune system fight off that cold going around the office.
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