There are serious consequences of not getting sleep, ranging from your health to your professional success. Approximately 70% of US adults do not get the sleep they require. But it seems to be the first thing we cut back on when we “don’t have time.” Even with the American culture becoming increasingly more aware of what it takes to have a healthy lifestyle, we still short-change ourselves on the quantity and quality of sleep we need.
That’s right . . .we NEED. As a culture, and maybe even as the human race, we do not value sleep as equally as other healthy lifestyle habits. It is considered a luxury or a weakness. Perhaps it is an attitude change we need towards sleep. Rather than considering it a luxury to “sleep in” on Saturday morning or a bragging right to only need 6 hours of sleep we should treat it the same as eating healthy and exercising. Nobody is perfect — I’m sure we all have room for improvement in the eating and exercising department, but we should at least recognize sleep as an equal factor to healthy eating and exercising to take the first step in the right direction.
Dr. Maas, a professor at Cornell University and author of several books on sleep, states that adults need a minimum of 7.5-9 hours of sleep to be fully alert and energetic all day long. The average number of hours an adult gets is 6. Although it might not seem like you are short-changing yourself much by reducing it 1.5 hours the ramifications could be life-changing.
A Few Consequences of Shortened Sleep:
• Increased heart disease, diabetes, Cancer, obesity, Alzheimer’s
• Increased irritability, anxiety
•Decreased motor skills, ability to communicate and concentrate
Check out this short video of Dr. Maas and his views on sleep:
by Angela Chism