Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Deep Sleep Can Foster Creativity, Too Little Sleep May Contribute to Type 2 Diabetes.

The benefits of sleep, and the down side of too little sleep, have been in the news lately, although the subject has been studied for hundreds of years.  

The choice is yours say the studies:  1.  Get lots of quality sleep and chances are your creative juices will solve problems and produce great ideas by morning.  It helps to determine the problem before going to bed and then relax and let your sleeping brain solve the problem during the night. Have a notepad handy to write down the solution when you become aware of it.  

(That used to work wonders for me when I wrote lyrics for a national television program.  I would got to sleep with the start of an idea, and during the night, wording would come forward that I wouldn't have thought of normally when awake.)

2.  When you regularly get too little sleep, like less than 5 hours and at the wrong times, you increase your risk of diabetes, heart disease and other health problems like high blood pressure, obesity, depression, memory impairment and a weakened immune system.

With up to 70 million Americans estimated to suffer from chronic sleep problems, insomnia and sleep apnea, that verges on an epidemic worth addressing.

For your best sleep, here are a few suggestions.  
1.  Get seven to eight hours of sleep a night, hitting the pillow around 10 p.m.
2.  If you work the night shift, avoid light on the drive home to avoid wakefulness and go to bed immediately.  Consider wearing a sleep mask to block out light in your bedroom.
3.  Avoid watching the late night news or working with technology, and keep your bedroom dark, quiet and cool.  Avoid alcohol, caffeine and stressful situations before bed, dealing quickly with any anger, bitterness or other negative feelings.

Add to that list, a comfortable mattress, pillow and bedding, plus non-binding bed clothes, all electronics at least five feet from your head, and you have the makings of great sleep and a more creative, healthy life.  (We also take the USANA Pure Rest melatonin to promote a more relaxed, deeper sleep)

What other ideas have you found for bringing about better sleep?  We'd love to read your comments.

Deanna and Dave Waters
Committed to Healthy, Happy Lifestyles 

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