Sleep – are you getting enough?

Getting 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night helps you to lose weight, look younger, feel better, and do better with memory, focus and willpower says Daniel G. Amen, M.D. in the book Change Your Brain Change Your Body.
This is a great book if you want to improve your life by changing your mind, and we can all do this if we choose to.
Here is a summary from the chapter on sleep:
2009 Sleep in America Poll:
– 20% of people get less than 6 hrs of sleep
– 28% of people get a good 8 hrs of sleep
– Temporary sleep issues affect almost everyone
– Sleep deprived people are twice as likely to eat sugary foods & simple carbs and skip breakfast which affects blood sugar which leads to poor choices all day

Sleep requirements for adults: 7-8 hrs
National Sleep Foundation
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

Losing sleep can make people fat:
– University of Chicago study
– People who are sleep deprived eat more simple carbs
– More of hormone ghrelin which stimulates appetite
– Less of hormone leptin which tells the brain you are full

Sleeping more helps with weight loss in a Glamour magazine study:
– 7 women slept 7&1/2 hrs for 10 weeks – lost 6 to 15 pounds

Sleep does more for your skin than cosmetics – younger, smoother, refreshed
Adequate sleep:
– Promotes good brain activity – memory, willpower, and focus
– Boosts athletic performance – better motor function & learning
– Improves mood and energy for socializing

Tips to help you go to sleep & stay asleep:
– maintain a regular sleep schedule
– create a soothing routine that encourages sleep
– read – avoid action packed or horror stories
– avoid naps
– sound therapy – nature sounds, music, fan
– drink warm milk with pure vanilla and stevia
– take electronic equipment out of the bedroom
– avoid eating 2 to 3 hours before bedtime
– exercise but not within 4 hours of going to bed
– avoid caffeine, chocolate, nicotine & alcohol
– avoid checking the clock if you wake in the night
– use the bedroom for sleep & sex – if you wake up go to another room
Change Your Brain Change Your Body is published by Harmony Books New York.

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