Is feeling healthy impossible? Get more sleep!
By Madelyn Collins
Pursuing a journalism and electronic media major at the University of Tennessee. Teach and perform dance on the side as a living.
Here is why a few more Z’s could be the ultimate elixir of wellness.
For many, the hallmark of a new year means a ‘new year, new me’ mentality. A survey conducted by Inc.com found the top three resolutions of 2019 were “Diet or eat healthier, Exercise more, and Lose weight.” All three of these top resolutions share something in common, being healthy. This is a notable resolution to have, but can it be done?
University of Scranton’s research leans towards a no, as they found only 8% of people actually achieved their resolutions. U.S. News Daily seems to also share doubt, as they reported 80% fail their resolution by February. With so much negative data on the success of resolutions, how can people expect this year to be any different?
Dr. Oz, a leading expert in the health industry, sat down with NBC Miami to give advice for wellness-seekers in 2019, “Fix your sleep.” Adequate rest is an integral part of living a healthy life. Oz says, “If you don’t sleep, it leads to high blood pressure, it increases your risk for cancer, leads to weight gain.”
Dr. Oz is not alone on this as numerous health experts agree extra sleep means a higher quality of health. According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, insufficient sleep can be correlated with “depression, anxiety, and mental distress… and lack of exercise and overeating.” Not to mention the school’s findings also showed “sleeping five hours or less per night increased mortality risk from all causes by roughly 15 percent.” Bad eating habits, weight gain, and lower life expectancy! It makes sense why Dr. Oz would put sleep as a critical goal in 2019.
This again leads to the question, how can people achieve more sleep if the resolutions are so difficult to keep? Again, Dr. Oz had advice to give.
Lose the smart devices
Being constantly connected can be wonderful, but no so much for your sleep. The constant notifications popping up on the screen can wake you up or keep you up all night long! If the phone or tablet is usually underneath the pillow or on the night table, Dr. Oz suggests moving it somewhere else. Moving the phone away from your head helps limit distractions and encourages an uninterrupted night’s sleep.
Turn the lights down
No one likes sleeping in a brightly lit room. So Dr. Oz suggests turning the lights down at least 20 minutes before bed. It creates a pleasant atmosphere and sets the body up nicely for the bedtime mood.
If you’re used to crawling into bed with the clothes you were wearing all day, you might need to invest in pajamas. “Be in comfortable clothing or no clothing at all,” says Oz. Being in comfy clothes (or not) can mean everything for quality rest!
Keep it cold
Turn down the thermostat as Dr. Oz says a colder room is more preferable than a hot one. “Colder environments allow you to hibernate better,” and if you are not the only one in the room Oz suggests, “If there’s a fight between you and your loved one about what temperature the room is, whoever wants it colder, they win.” An extra blanket is not a large task for a good night’s sleep.
Limit the noise
Acquiring sleep also involves a quieter environment. Falling asleep to the TV or a favorite Netflix show has no benefits for sleep. Turn it off! If you are not in control the noises in the house Oz says, “…get a sound machine. They do work.” It can be effective for drowning out loud pets, loved ones, or outside noises.
Taking all of these steps will not only aid in better sleep, but it will also assist in achieving any 2019 health resolutions!