Boost Health and Brighten Beauty with the Best Sleep Habits
Updated: Aug 1
"Sleep is overrated."
“You can sleep when you’re dead.”
You’ve heard these sayings, and maybe you’ve even said them yourself. But what is the truth?
Sleep is Essential
Hallucinations and the systematic shut down of your body will begin to happen within only a few days without sleep. Sleep is essential.
When you are asleep, your body goes into repair, cleaning and maintenance mode. Your body needs good, quality sleep to accomplish those functions.
In the Bible, “rest” is a theme that appears often. God rested on the seventh day after He made His creation, and that is the model He set up for the Israelites to follow.
Later, Jesus also spoke of physical rest. Once, when His disciples were being bombarded by crowds and they didn’t even have a chance to eat, He told them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” (Mark 6:31)
Sleep Makes You Prettier
Getting fewer than six hours of sleep affects the way you look. The repair processes during sleep include increasing blood flow and making new collagen. If you are getting quality sleep for the right amount of time, you will appear happier and healthier. Your eyes will be brighter. You will have a more glowing complexion, and your hair will even be fuller. They don't call it beauty sleep for nothing. (Jacob)
What Kind of Sleep?
Your body requires quality sleep. Did you know that if you are getting the right quantity (hours), if quality is lacking, your body systems may be affected just the same?
If you are not able to fall sleep or into a deep sleep, or you are not sleeping enough, you might try to determine what is keeping you awake.
Are you under stress causing your mind to race? Do you consume food or beverages at bedtime that contain stimulants? Is the temperature of your bedroom bothering you? Or any noises? Or pets? Do you participate in activities before bed that keep your brain awake, such as looking at your cell phone? Is there too much light? Is the bed too firm or soft? Are you in pain? Are you experiencing any side effects from medications?
In Step 3, we’ll be talking about nutritional food. With the right resources, your pineal gland can make and secrete the hormone melatonin, which helps us sleep. The pineal gland in our brains is the major source for melatonin production. It is produced naturally from the amino acid tryptophan at nighttime. Foods known to be high in tryptophan are; chicken, turkey, fish, eggs, cheese, milk, tofu and soy, peanuts, pumpkin and sesame seeds, and chocolate.
In Step 5, we will talk about exercise. Pain is tricky because it can prevent quality sleep, but quality sleep is needed to help the body repair. A good diet and movement also promote repair to the body, and as a result, you may sleep better.
Quantity of Sleep
As for quantity of sleep, how many hours are actually needed? The National Sleep Foundation released the results of a two-year study in 2015 revealing the answer.
The panel agreed that, for healthy individuals with normal sleep, the appropriate sleep duration for newborns to older adults is as follows:
Newborns: 14 -17 hours
Infants: 12- 15 hours
Toddlers: 11 - 14 hours
Preschoolers: 10 - 13 hours
School-aged children: 9 -11 hours
Teenagers: 8 - 10 hours
Young Adults: 7 - 9 hours
Adults: 7 - 9 hours
Older Adults: 7 - 8 hours
Well, that’s it for Step 2, folks. It's time for Step 3! Pleasant dreams!
Meg Grimm writes biblical studies and research articles that help set women free from impractical standards of the world. She strives to unveil true beauty and sensible body care principles from a godly perspective.
Jacob, Stephanie. "The Truth About Beauty Sleep." Radiance by WebMD. Accessed 26 Feb 2020 through https://www.webmd.com/beauty/features/beauty-sleep#1
"Melatonin." You and Your Hormones: An Educational Resource from the Society of Endocrinology. Mar 2018. Accessed 8 Feb 2020 through https://www.yourhormones.info/hormones/melatonin/
"What Is Tryptophan." Healthline. Accessed 8 Feb 2020 through https://www.healthline.com/health/tryptophan
Hirshkowitz, Max, et al. "National Sleep Foundation’s sleep time duration recommendations: methodology and results summary" Sleep Health: Journal of the National Sleep Foundation. March 2015. Access 8 Feb 2020 through https://www.sleephealthjournal.org/article/S2352-7218%2815%2900015-7/fulltext