Why we should be obsessed with sleep
Why does there never seem to be enough hours in the day? As an increasingly time poor society, we'll happily set an earlier alarm or burn the midnight oil to get it all done. Even then, there's still a myriad of life's stressors to keep us up once we finally make it to bed...
So how can bad sleep affect us?
Sleep helps with performance and productivity. Fail to get your forty winks, and you may find yourself falling behind your peers at work.
Our immune system is negatively affected by sleep deprivation. This disruption can increase your chances of catching viruses such as colds.
Mental health and adequate sleep go hand in hand. Sleep is closely linked to mood and well-being, so if you're well rested you'll feel brighter with less mood swings.
Poor sleeping patterns increase your chance of being overweight. When you're tired, your body releases more of the hormones which make you feel hungry. There's also a tendency to reach out to higher calorie foods to provide the energy you're lacking.
Weight gain can also be a secondary outcome if you're stressed at work, unwell or feeling low. Our eating habits are closely linked to emotions so when we don't feel great, the temptation to reach for unhealthy foods starts to creep in. Those good intentions to get out and exercise can also fall by the wayside when we feel tired. We've all been there!
So it seems that sleep plays a huge role in helping us succeed - both in our day to day lives, and if we have a weight loss goal to achieve. If you're feeling a bit jaded, why not try our tips for hitting the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
Set realistic bedtimes. If there's no chance of your head hitting the pillow by 9pm, don't set this as your bed time. Make sure the bedtime you set can be achieved on a daily basis.
Create the right bedroom environment. Bad bedding can make or break a good night's sleep. Duvets, pillows and mattresses can all can have a huge impact so are worth the investment. Did you know you can now buy weighted blankets, which promise to improve sleep quality!
Reduce screen time. Try to put your phone away or turn the TV off at least 30 minutes before bed. It's difficult at first, but you'll start to feel the positive impact to your sleep almost straight away.
Keep a journal. Often, it's the stress of thinking about tomorrow which keeps us up. Try downloading all of your thoughts and put pen to paper before bed. This way you can put those thoughts to the back of your mind and concentrate on resting.
Invest in some sleep tech. There's a huge amount of technology which is geared towards improving our sleep - the global sleep market is predicted to grow to a huge $84 billion this year. The Fitbit Versa Two has dedicated sleep tools to help you understand and improve your sleep.