Can’t Live Without It: 10 Vital Benefits of Sleep

benefits of sleep

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Why do we need sleep? What are the benefits of sleep? Here are 10 essential reasons we need sleep.

Being able to function is just one of the many benefits of sleep. Medical doctors recognize ample and quality sleep as a key factor in being effective care providers.

“I try to practice what I preach … to get in bed and wake up at predictable times … I know I need seven to eight hours of sleep in order to function well the next day,” says Susheel Patil, M.D, clinical director of Johns Hopkins Sleep Medicine. “If certain things don’t get done by the end of the day, they just have to wait, if I’m going to be helpful to patients the next day.”

Benefits of sleep as preventative medicine

  • Heart health. A recent article in Johns Hopkins Medicine noted one of the best and most important benefits of sleep is its positive impact on your heart health. Without adequate sleep, your risk for heart disease and heart attack goes up. In an article about how sleep deprivation affects your heart, The National Sleep Foundation asserts that “sleep is essential for a healthy heart. People who don’t sleep enough are at higher risk for cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease—regardless of age, weight, smoking and exercise habits. Getting enough good quality sleep is important if you want to lower you risk of these conditions.”
  • Mental health. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, sleep deprivation puts you at a greater risk for depression, irritability, anxiety, forgetfulness, fuzzy thinking, and dementia. Simply getting adequate sleep — which means at least seven hours a night — could help prevent all these mental health issues.

Benefits of sleep, galore

By now you probably realize getting a good night’s sleep is good for you … And not getting good sleep is downright bad for you. Getting enough sleep is vital to your physical and mental health and longevity. To further ensure this message has hit home, watch the Mayo Clinic’s video, below and learn 8 (more) reasons healthy sleep should be non-negotiable:


Benefits of sleep according to the Mayo Clinic video above: 

  • Sleep makes you a quick study. “You acquire learning while you’re awake, but you cement neural connections during sleep.”
  • Sleeping on it solves problems. “Puzzle solvers who took a nap were more likely to discover a shortcut than those who didn’t.”
  • Short sleep leaves you short tempered. “Couples who slept less had more inflammation in their bodies and more hot-headed arguments.”
  • Less than six hours a night raises risk. “Too many short nights is linked with diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.”
  • Too little sleep adds pounds. “Your body needs good sleep to regulate the hormones that affect hunger.”
  • Sleep boosts your immune system. “Over time, a deficit can leave you more vulnerable to infections.”
  • Resting up gives athletes their edge. “Sleep triggers growth hormone and androgens to build and repair muscle and burn fat.”
  • Sleep may give you more time, period. “Seven to eight hours of shut-eye is associated with a longer life.”

Now, you know, sleep is one of the best things we can do for our overall health and wellness. Sleep well, live well … sleep long, live long …

benefits of sleep
photo: Envato Elements