Here are some short snappy benefits of sleep and why it should be one of the main pillars of your health system.
Sleep improves memory and cognition
Studies show that sleep can improve both our semantic memory (facts) and our procedural memory (skills), as well as other cognitive processes like focusing our attention. If we’re deprived of sleep, these processes decline. Bottom line - sleep more, or you’ll forget your Grandma’s birthday. AGAIN.
It can improve your athletic ability
Studies show that athletes who’ve had more sleep are far more able to sustain tougher workouts and show improved athletic performance. Athletes who are deprived of sleep show the opposite trend and perform much worse.
Roger Federer, for example, always makes sure he sleeps 10 hours a night leading up to a match. Obviously, we’re not all world class tennis players (sad face), but if you’ve been dreaming of a new personal best in the gym, or want to run your fastest 5k, then dreaming might genuinely be the way to get there.
Sleeping enough can help you lose weight and want to eat more healthily
We all love a cupcake. But if you’re sleep deprived, you’ll be waaaaay more likely to pick one up than opting for a salad - people tend to consume more fatty, sugary foods when sleep deprived. There’s also an ever-growing link between (lack of) sleep and obesity. This is actually great news if you’re looking to lose weight, because rather than spending your life in the gym, it might be more helpful to spend a few more hours in bed.
It may protect you against diseases like cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s
Self explanatory, really. Longitudinal studies have shown that more sleep means decreased likelihood of these scary conditions.
If you’re thinking... ‘this sounds great, but how do I get better sleep in the first place?’ Here’s a few tips:
Lower the temperature
Your brain needs to drop its temperature by 1-2 degrees in order to initiate sleep. Put on a fan, sleep in light, breathable clothing (or get naked, teehee), or have a hot bath before sleep - getting out of the bath will cause your body temperature to drop.
Put the phone down
We’ve all heard it. Our mums have shouted at us about it. But it’s true - artificial light is RUINING our sleep. If you can, put away any screens an hour before bed and dim the lights to let your body know it’s time to sleep.
Meditate, practice mindfulness, or find another way of clearing your mind and de-stressing before bed
Stress is one of the main reasons why a lot of us are finding it so hard to sleep at night. Chill out. Relax. Wind down.
Pour yourself a Pause
We made this because we care about helping everyone get enough sleep in as natural a way as possible. Taking Pause half an hour before bed will get your body all nice and prepped to get to sleep, stay asleep and wake up feeling refreshed the next morning.
If you found yourself yawning while reading this, we won’t be offended. Go forth and snooze!
PS - if you’re interested in this kind of thing, check out Why We Sleep by Professor Matthew Walker. It’s a great book, and one that EVERYONE is talking about. Or have a listen to this podcast where he’ll talk you through everything here.