Attention beauties: Never underestimate the importance of getting enough sleep! Getting adequate sleep plays a crucial role in not just your mental functions, but in your physical appearance as well. The amount of sleep you are typically getting is displayed in your general appearance, your weight, your skin and also your stress levels. Don’t write off the phrase “beauty sleep” as a simple cliche. It holds far more truth than most people know.
Sleeping gives your body a chance to repair itself on the cellular level. As you sleep, extra protein molecules are produced to rid your skin of pollutants and infections while they simultaneously rebuild the cells that allow you to wake up refreshed with radiant skin. Think of the days you don’t get enough sleep. You pull yourself up with puffy, bloodshot eyes surrounded by dark circles. You don’t get the necessary sleep to allow the molecules to repair yesterday’s damage. Getting the right amount of sleep is the proven “anti aging” miracle we all dream of.
Now you can stop feeling guilty when you go to bed early and skip your daily workout because proper sleeping habits can help control your body weight. When you sleep, the hormones that regulate your appetite are placed back in control, possibly ridding your thoughts of those nasty cravings. When you deprive your body of sleep, your body naturally craves sugar and carbohydrates as a defense mechanism to jolt you awake. For those of you who can’t seem to shed those last five pounds, try hitting the hay an hour early.
Of course, the best way to feel beautiful is to not feel stressed. Stress hormones are released during the day as a result of today’s fast paced lifestyle. These hormones have physical effects on the body as well. Excessive stress is a common cause of the degeneration of internal organs as well as the aging of your skin (aka: wrinkles!). Sleep helps to reverse many of these effects as it maintains a state of relaxation.
The average adult needs 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night, but it varies depending on the individual. Not getting enough sleep results in a whole bunch of problems, but too much sleep also makes it more difficult for your body to enter back into its functioning mode.
How much an individual needs is dependent on many factors. Here are some things to keep in mind: Women often require an extra hour in the week before they begin menstruating and during pregnancy. Genetics also play a part in determining your specific needs. The amount of time it takes your body to reach the phase of deep sleep where the benefits are received is often hereditary.
The best way to find out what works best for you is to take into consideration your individual situation based on the criteria above. And then, experiment. If you often feel groggy, try going to bed earlier. If you habitually go to sleep early, sleep late, and still wake up unrested, try staying up an hour later. While “beauty sleep” is often used in regards to women’s needs, it is vital for everyone. Get your sleep and you will wake up energized, beautiful, and healthier.