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How Sleep Prevents Health Issues

4 Reasons to Hit the Hay Earlier Tonight

Functioning on six or fewer hours of sleep might be the norm for you, but consistently not getting enough z's can affect your mood and your health. Here are four reasons to make an earlier bedtime a priority.

  1. To avoid weight gain: You wake up groggy from lack of sleep and reach for some kind of edible pick-me-up. Chances are it's sugary or high in fat, which means it's high in calories. Fatigue encourages mindless snacking and more calories consumed, which can lead to an expanding waistline. That coupled with skipped workouts from lack of energy means even more weight gain. A foggy head can also impair your judgment, making you more likely to give in to cravings. If you're trying to lose weight, getting enough sleep can make all the difference.
  2. To prevent heart issues: Lack of sleep raises your blood pressure, putting unnecessary strain on your ticker, which puts you at risk for a heart attack or stroke.
  3. To strengthen your immune system: Your body needs an adequate amount of downtime in order to function normally and to be able to fight illnesses. Getting about eight hours of sleep a night boosts your immune system and can reduce your risk of getting sick.
  4. For a long life: Staying at a healthy weight, preventing heart problems, and having a strong immune system are all linked to living a longer life.
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