We all know that not getting enough sleep at night can leave us feeling groggy and out of sorts during the day. But a new study published in this month’s issue of the journal, Nature, recommends that adults need eight hours of sleep every night and teenagers need over nine hours. They do not recommend sleeping less on some days and then making up the time on other days, but to consistently keep a regular sleeping schedule.
The reason for this consistency lies with the steroid hormone, cortisol. According to the experts, “it helps the body to respond to stress and regulates everything from metabolism, to your immune system. All of these things contribute to our well-being and globally to our risk of heart disease.” In this research study, the mice that were sleep deprived showed a higher accumulation of plaque in their arteries, and there was a boost in their white blood cell production that triggered atherosclerosis. In humans, that would signify an increased risk for hypertension, stroke, and diabetes.
If you are having difficulty sleeping, just as with any other health concern, please see your healthcare provider. If you are in South Florida, you can make an appointment or walk-in to either one of our Primary Medical Care Centers in Miami-Dade or Broward.