Boost Heart Health With A Good Night’s Sleep
We all know sleep is good for us, but did you know having a good night’s kip is essential for our health? The American Heart Association (AHA) has revealed that getting enough ‘zzzzs’ is as important as a good diet and not smoking for our cardiovascular health.
It updated its checklist for heart wellbeing entitled ‘Life’s Essential 8’. This looks at eight different areas that could impact someone’s cardiovascular state.
The new version has replaced the previous ‘Life’s Simple 7’ questionnaire, which has been in use for the last 12 years, with sleep duration now an important factor to consider when determining the health of someone’s heart, along with diet, physical activity, body mass index, blood lipids, nicotine exposure, blood glucose and blood pressure.
Put simply, Dr Eduardo Sanchez, chief medical officer for prevention at the AHA, said: “Folks not getting enough sleep have a higher likelihood of things like obesity, hypertension and diabetes.”
So, what counts as enough sleep? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults need at least seven hours of sleep a night. However, the most important thing is that this slumber is of good quality.
Therefore, you should not feel sleepy or tired, repeatedly wake up in the middle of the night, or have a sleep disorder, such as snoring or sleep apnoea.
If you don’t think you’re having long, or good, enough sleep, CDC recommends making habits to improve your night-time rest. These include going to bed, and waking up, at the same time every day – even at weekends.
It also suggested making the bedroom quiet, dark, relaxing and not too hot or too cold. Electronic devices, including your phone, should be removed from the bedroom, and large meals, caffeine and alcohol should be avoided before hitting the sack.
Getting exercise during the day and ditching cigarettes have also been known to improve sleep, as well as heart health.
Make it easier to fall asleep with these comfy pug onesies.