Did you know we spend up to one-third of our lives asleep?
We spend up to one-third of our lives asleep. Since we were born, sleep is a natural mechanism–a complex and important state of mind and body. Not only does sleep give a body time to rest and recharge, but it also helps a body to grow and repair itself.
When we wake up in the morning, our body produces hormones for preparing or supporting tasks and situations throughout the day. So, not only is getting enough hours of sleep per day is crucial, but also the quality of sleep.
Sleeping is directly related to two hormones, including melatonin and growth hormones. At night, melatonin and growth hormones are released by darkness, and in the morning, such releases are inhibited by bright light.
Melatonin has often been referred to as a ‘sleep hormone’. It gradually increases in the evening, reaches the highest level at midnight, and ultimately s in the morning. It plays an important role in stimulating growth hormone secretion. Melatonin is synthesized tryptophan, vitamin B3, B6, and magnesium. However, melatonin levels decline gradually over the life-span and may be related to lowered sleep efficacy. So, taking some light snacks that contain essential dietary amino acid as tryptophan, such as banana, peanut, sesame, can help you sleep more soundly.
Growth hormone or aging hormone is secreted a small gland that sits at the base of the brain called ‘the pituitary gland’. Apart playing a key role in growth when we were young and cell repair after 25 years old, growth hormone also helps stimulate cell reproduction, cell regeneration, bone growth and enhance blood sugar and fatty acid metabolism.
Growth hormone is secreted during deep sleep, particularly midnight to 1.30 am. Therefore, if you want to maintain your youthfulness, the best time to go to bed is 10.00 pm and no later than 11.30 pm, so that you can get maximum benefit the released growth hormone.
During adolescence, you probably see that you still feel alright without any fatigue although you could not get a wink of sleep, but after 28 years old, the reduced level of growth hormone will make your body become weaker than before.
Have you been experiencing any of these symptoms lately?
1. Struggle to get out of bed in the morning
2. Experience daytime extreme fatigue or daytime sleepiness
3. Increased facial wrinkles, crow’s feet or under-eye bags
4. Increased white hair
5. Delayed wound healing
6. Unexplained weight gain
7. Decreased muscle mass
8. Get sick often such as colds, allergies, and other infectious diseases.
If you have experienced three or four of above for weeks, you are sleep deprived and risk of developing in:
• Immune system deficiency, skin allergies
• Digestive Conditions
• Alzheimer’s disease or memory loss
• Heart disease
• Mood Swings
• Erectile Dysfunction
How much sleep do we really need?
You might think that getting enough sleep with good quality means you wake up feeling refreshed and ready for any activity all day as if you’ve “filled the tank”. But according to the results of a world-class study taking more than two years of research to complete by The National Sleep Foundation–an update to our most-cited guidelines on how much sleep you really need at each age, the measurement of good sleep is as follows:
Newborns (0-3 months) : Sleep range 14-17 hours each day
Infants (4-11 months) : Sleep range 12-15 hours each day
Toddlers (1-2 years) : Sleep range 11-14 hours each day
Preschoolers (3-5) : Sleep range 10-13 hours each day
School-age children (6-13) : Sleep range 9-11 hours each day
Teenagers (14-17) : Sleep range 8-10 hours each day
Younger adults (18-25) : Sleep range 7-9 hours each day
Adults (26-64): Sleep range does not change and remains 7-9 hours each day
Elderly adults (65+) : Sleep range 7-8 hours each day
In addition, having healthy sleep habits can help you to get quality time during your rest.
Let’s take the following healthy sleep tips:
1. Stick to a sleep schedule of the same bedtime and wake-up time, even on the weekends.
2. Avoid caffeine drinks at least 8 hours before bedtimes such as coffee, tea, green tea, chocolate, and energy drinks.
3. Consuming alcohol can disturb your sleep
4. Avoid eating a large meal. If you feel hungry, take light snacks that contain tryptophan such as banana and soy milk.
5. Evaluate your bedroom to ensure the ideal temperature, sound, and light.
6. Cool down your brain and practice a relaxing bedtime ritual such as listening to relaxing song, praying, and meditation, as well as turning off your mobile phone, games and electronic devices.
7. Doing exercise 2-3 hours before bed can interfere with sleep quality and disrupt sleep later in the night.
8. Should not take sleeping pill for longer than 3 weeks without physician instructions.
Sleep is very important for humans, which is the best tool to fight with aging. No one can do it for you, only you can make for a friend in need as your health. When you getting good sleep that mean your health will healthier, on the other hand inefficient sleep can destroy your health more and more; Therefore, let’s taking care of your sleep.
1. Payne J. Learning, Memory, and Sleep in Humans2011. 15-30 p.
2. Williams, Caroline. How Much Sleep Do You Really Need? New Scientist Magazine. 28 May 2016. Vol. 230. No. 3075. United Kingdom
3. Takahashi Y, Kipnis D, Daughaday W. Growth hormone secretion during sleep. The Journal of clinical investigation. 1968;47(9):2079-90.
4. Healthy Sleep In Adults. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. 2016;193(5): P7-P8.
5.ตนุพล วิรุฬหการุญ. (2561). นอนถูกวิธี สุขภาพดีตลอดชีวิต. พิมพ์ครั้งที่ 4. กรุงเทพฯ. บริษัทอมรินทร์พริ้นติ้งแอนด์พับลิชชิ่ง จำกัด.
Credit: Health Brings Wealth Issue 22
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