How many hours sleep do you really need?

We willingly give up our sleep, something quite unique to humans. What does your pet do when you are out?

Why do I need to Sleep?

We are rhythmical beings, responding to the rotation of the earth around the sun and on its axis, the light-dark cycle of life. We evolved to be part of this cycle and our bodily processes are cyclical. Sleep is a big part of the cycling of these processes. Some things happen at night when we are asleep and some things happen during the day; your body doesn’t like to digest food at night, and a full stomach makes it hard to get to sleep. Digestion is a daytime activity, and it conflicts with vital reparative night-time activities. And this conflict has metabolic consequences, with insulin resistance, leptin resistance and weight gain.

Sleep is needed for Repair, Growth and Regeneration

Sleep is the time when you regenerate after your day. Repair and growth ready you for the following day. After an hour of lifting weights, it is during the following night’s sleep, that growth hormone organises the repair process. Then your damaged muscles grow back bigger and stronger. But you do need to sleep for the growth!

Sleep is needed for Memory

Your brain needs to sleep too, as it consolidates memory at night. Your brain processes the day’s events, catalogues the goings on, and sends memory files from short-term storage to long-term storage memory files. Sleep less and you will have a poor memory and a higher risk of developing dementia.

How much Sleep do I need?

Those who sleep less, live shorter lives, an undeniable scientific fact. But just how many hours of sleep do we need? Sleep scientists are much closer to agreement on this. The consensus is that you need to sleep between 7–9 hours per night. Of course, there are some people who are outside these norms, but ideally a minimum of 7 hours is the sweet spot, and you should aim to make this 7 hours your minimum sleep time.

What does Quality of Sleep mean?

Not just does the amount of sleep matter, but the quality of sleep is also important, as different things happen in the different cycles of sleep. There are four different stages or cycles of sleep, and you move smoothly from one stage to the next. Each cycle lasts for about 90–120 minutes, and in health there are normally 4 cycles per night.

What gets you to sleep?

Sleep is the final crescendo of the world’s greatest orchestra, a well-oiled machine with key players having specific timing and roles. Get one note out of place and the whole piece disintegrates. The master clock, melatonin and our body clocks are all key players in your sleep orchestra. Body clock harmony is the key. Dyssynchronous body clocks mean fractured, poor sleep: a disharmonious and sad melody.

Melatonin is the starting Gun of Sleep

Our good friend melatonin, called the ‘hormone of darkness’ chimes the sleep bell. Melatonin, is the trigger for sleep, and tells you that it is time to go to sleep.[5] In the early evening, after dusk, the level of melatonin starts to build up and when it reaches a certain point, the brain dictates that sleep is now to be generated. And then you fall asleep. As you sleep and the night turns to dawn, the level of melatonin drops and cortisol starts to increase, which increases your heart rate, your blood pressure and temperature, preparing you for the day and then you wake up. When you wake up, the circulating melatonin has disappeared.

The Master Clock

The Master Clock controls the timing of your body clocks. The master clock is set by morning daylight. Every single morning, your master clock, resets each of your 31 trillion body clocks. And because of this, all your clocks chime in synchrony.

About the Diet Whisperer

At Whisperer HQ, Paul and Monique’s mission is simple. To help improve your metabolic health and lose weight quickly and permanently.

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The Diet-Whisperer

The Diet-Whisperer

Modern lifestyles, diet and weight, are causing a tsunami of diseases across the world. We want to share information about how to lose weight and feel better