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April 16, 2024 3 min read

Unlocking Longevity: How Sleep Fights Chronic Illness

All of us have gotten out of bed after just a couple of hours of sleep. Our body feels heavy and unable to function. We just want to go back to slumber and dream away.

Sleep is a time to recharge your body from an exhausting day. But that’s not all. The quality of your sleep directly impacts your immune system. That’s why it’s easier for you to get colds and get sick when you don’t have enough sleep.

If you want to get healthier and live longer, then a proper night’s rest is your best friend. In this post, we will dive into how sleep affects your longevity and prevents chronic illness.

Science of Sleeping

Your internal body clock (yes, there’s such a thing) regulates your sleep cycle. It tells you when you’re tired, ready for bed, or refreshed and alert. It’s called circadian rhythm, a 24-hour cycle that affects your sleep, body temperature, hormones, appetite, and other body functions.

It is recommended that adults should get a minimum of seven hours of sleep every night to ensure optimal cognitive and behavioural functions. Not getting enough sleep can have severe consequences.

Studies have shown that sleep deprivation can make people more susceptible to attention lapses, reduced cognitive function, delayed reactions, and mood swings.

It's important to consider that your sleep quality may be affected by an underlying health issue, which could also increase your health risks. For example, sleep apnea caused by pre-existing heart disease or obesity can negatively impact your sleep and impact your longevity.

Sleep vs Chronic Illnesses

Chronic illnesses are usually caused by an unhealthy immune system. Do you know what impacts your immune system the most? Yes, it’s sleep.

To promote sleep, our bodies release a protein called cytokines while sleeping. Cytokines are a crucial component of combating stress, infection, or inflammation.

Having less sleep or being sleep deprived may decrease cytokine production. It also prevents your body from producing antibodies and cells. Prolonged sleep deprivation has also been linked to insulin resistance, poor glucose tolerance, and an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Basically, getting enough sleep helps protect people against many chronic diseases and premature mortality. It also helps your brain relax and flush away toxins.

Getting a Better Sleep

Research shows that between 7-9 hours is the most optimal sleep duration you should have. But it can still vary depending on the individual. Here are some of the best tips to improve your sleep quality:

Make a Bedtime Routine

Our brain picks up our habits. Doing the same steps at night will tell you it’s time to go to sleep. It can be as simple as putting on your pajamas or brushing your teeth. It doesn't have to be elaborate.

Keep Your Room Dark

This is simple because our brain uses light and darkness as a cue that it’s time to rest. You don’t have to go complete blackout, but many suggest that the darker it is, the more likely you are to sleep.

Exercise Regularly

Engaging in moderate aerobic exercise such as walking can enhance the quality of sleep, particularly the slow-wave sleep that is vital for repairing tissues.

Ready for That Perfect Slumber?

As we get older, we tend to get busier and forget how important sleep and rest is. That’s why many adults are prone to chronic illnesses because we take our bodies for granted. Remember that we have to recover, our immune system needs its precious time to heal the rest of our body.

So, set that bedtime routine, dim the lights, and get ready for sleep. To get more quality sleep, check out Evrbed—a customizable and sustainable sleeping solution for your family.