How Lack Of Sleep Affects The Body

How Lack Of Sleep Affects The Body

The first thing we are always taught, when we learn about sleep, is to get at least eight hours of sleep.

We learned from our doctors, parents, and friends about getting enough sleep. But, yet some of us are still not getting enough rest. It can be extremely difficult as there are so many responsibilities and only so much time in a day.

Dehydration And Sleep 

The fact is that we know that lack of sleep affects our health negatively. Maybe, this should motivate us to take the time to plan a set sleep schedule. We should turn our attention to this new study showing sleep deprivation can actually make you dehydrated. Not getting at least eight hours of sleep a night increases the chances of dehydration.

The study involved 25,000 adults from China and the United States. Some of the participants getting eight or more hours of sleep and people who slept six hours a night. Those people that slept only six hours a night showed more concentrated urine.  The study proved that they have 16% to 59% higher chance of being dehydrated.

So why is this happening? The scientist believes it has to do with a hormone called vasopressin, which is released in the body during the night, in your sleep cycle. This hormone helps control the body’s fluid levels. It pulls water back into the body from our urine to stop us from loosing too much water while we are sleeping.

Researchers also believe that the side effects of not sleeping enough might be caused by dehydration.

Other Effects Sleep Has On The Body

Respiratory System

Losing out on sleep can cause you to be prone to respiratory infections like cold and flu. It can also worsen any existing infections.

Immune system

For the immune system to do its job, the body needs sleep. Our body produces cytokine, which are substances that are used to fight off bacteria and viruses. They give your body the energy to fight off diseases. If you have sleep disturbances, your immune system is not strong enough to fight off bacteria and viruses. It can lead to getting sick quicker and recovering at a slower rate.

Central Nervous System

When the body is in a sleep state, neurons in your brain help process new information. When the body is deprived of sleep the brain is fatigued and unable to perform at its best. This can negatively affect your concentration, memory, and creativity. It can also affect your mood, triggering mood swings.

Cardiovascular System

Sleep helps with maintaining a healthy heart, blood vessels, blood pressure, blood sugar, and inflammation levels. Studies have shown that insomnia can be linked to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

Digestive System

Lack of sleep can contribute to weight gain and obesity. Leptin and ghrelin are two hormones that are in charge of the feelings of hunger and fullness. They can be affected by sleep. The hormone leptin works by alerting your brain that you had enough to eat. But when you don’t have enough sleep, your brain produces less leptin and raises ghrelin levels. This causes people to be hungry late at night. Sleep disturbances also cause the body to release higher levels of insulin, which lead to fat storage and increases your risk of type 2 diabetes.

Short-term problems caused by sleep deprivation

  • Lack of alertness
  • Impaired memory
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Increased likelihood of causing accidents

Long-term effects of sleep deprivation

  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Heart Attack
  • Heart Failure
  • Stroke
  • Sex drive
  •  Depression
  • Obesity

So, what if you want to go to sleep on time, but have trouble falling asleep? Check out my article on natural remedies for sleep!

Kara Stavish

Kara is a teacher, coach, online course instructor and the founder of Concepts Of Life & Wellness. She received a bachelors degree in psychology from Penn State University and not long after was diagnosed with Hashimoto's Autoimmune Disease in 2015. As she struggled to feel better, she began an intense search to find healing. After immersing herself into the learning process, she removed her medication and healed her body. From this experience, she now dedicates her life to helping others learn how to feel better and live a healthier life. Her enthusiasm for healing has helped so many people and continues to do so.

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