Tag Archives: weight

Running to bed

26 Jul

So you may have noticed by now that sleep is becoming a big theme on the blog. This is sadly because over here at The Health Supplement I’ve been having trouble sleeping.

Refusing to dwell on this, I’m turning my sleeplessness into healthy blogs! What’s more, following a visit to the doctors, it’s inspired the first Supplementer challenge!

I’ll be ditching the bus to run the 6k from my work to my flat for two weeks. Exercies is good for wearing you out ahead of bedtime, but should not be done directly before you go to bed. Around 4/5 hours before you want to sleep is a good rule.

I’m hoping this first challenge should be quite easy as I was quite a proficient runner (I even managed 30k on a hilly coastline once), but having not run for a while, time will tell.

I’ll keep you updated with my adventures and will be posting some running related blogs along the way (so you don’t have to hear me harping on about tiredness!)

Wish me luck!

Ni, the Supplementer


Stay in bed, it’s good for you

22 Jul

Sleep is good, we know this. We just hate being tired and yet we still stay up all night drinking, working, just playing computer games, etc, you get the idea. So why should we put down that glass of wine, computer mouse or console controller and get to bed? Here we look at what happens when you get less sleep than you should. watch this space for advice on getting to sleep too.

Losing sleep impairs your ability to learn

A lack of sleep has negative effects on attention, alertness, concentration, reasoning, and problem solving. This makes it more difficult to process information, hindering learning.

Certain sleep cycles also help cement the information you process during the day, meaning that the effects of sleep deprivation are twofold, in the first instance you don’t fully take information in and secondly, you don’t remember it effectively.

Sleeping less leads to a quiet bedroom

Studies have found that people suffering with sleep-deprivation report having lower libidos and a lower interest in sex. A lack of energy, tiredness, and increased tension may be largely to blame.

It’s also claimed that men suffering from sleep apnea, a respiratory problem that interrupts sleep, may have a lower level of testosterone in a study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism in 2002. The study found nearly half of the men who suffered from severe sleep apnea also secreted abnormally low levels of testosterone during the night.

A lack of sleep can lead to additional health defects

Sleep disorders and chronic sleep loss can put you at risk of developing various conditions, including heart disease, heart failure, high blood pressure, strokes and diabetes. Tiredness can also be a sign of and a factor in developing depression. Which leads us to…

Tiredness is bad for your mood

Studies show that people who get less than five hours sleep a night over a period of more than six days feel more stressed, angry, sad, and mentally exhausted. Long term sleeplessness can aggravate the symptoms of depression.

It has also been shown that people with insomnia, the most common sleep disorder, are five times more likely to develop depression as those without. In fact, insomnia is often one of the first symptoms of depression.

Sadly the links between sadness and depression can lead to a downward spiral, with one feeding off and strengthening the other. Thankfully the opposite is true as treating one can improve the other too.

Looking tired sticks

While the immediate effects of bad sleep are easily spotted in the skin, puffy eyes, paleness, etc, it also has long term effects.

The body produces excess levels of stress hormone, cortisol when you are tired. This breaks down the skin’s collagen, which is responsible for keeping skin smooth and supple.

By missing out on sleep you also reduce your body’s ability to produce growth hormone, which helps increase muscle mass, healthy bones and thickens skin.

So forget the moisturiser and get yourself to bed – you’ve got your skin to think of.

Deciding to get enough sleep will lead to more good decisions

Well to be precise it’s actually the opposite that’s more accurate, as tiredness impairs judgment. OK so that’s not so surprising, it’s hard to decide on anything when you’re tired, but that’s only the half of it!

Being tired actually impairs your understanding of events, so before you’ve even begun evaluating a set of options, you’ve probably already misunderstood what you’re being asked to choose between.

What’s more, our ability to judge our impairment is itself, impaired. Studies reveal that people who regularly get between 5-6 hours of sleep a night claim to have adapted to less sleep, however they consistently underperform on mental ability tests compared to people who have 7-8 hours sleep and as sleep deprivation continues so their scores worsen.

Tiredness causes weight gain

That’s right, it’s the perfect excuse to stay in bed. Studies found that short sleepers gained more weight than long sleepers, even when they were more active than their well-rested counterparts.

A lack of sleep effects various hormone levels including the ‘hunger horemone’ Leptin. The imbalance causes people to consume more calories. The research showed that the effects of an imbalance of Leptin are staggering, with short sleepers being heavier despite burning an extra 1,000 calories over the long sleepers.

So there you have it, some very good reasons to get some sleep. So if your reading this last thing at night STOP and get some kip! If you’re reading this at a sesible hour, why not check out our tips on getting Sweet dreams

Health be with you,

Ni, the Supplementer