Study Finds Lack Of Sleep May Lead To Brain Shrinkage

There’s no question sleep is crucial for proper body function. Sleep deprivation has repeatedly been linked to reduced attention and alertness, making it a real challenge to focus on daily activities. Chronic sleep deprivation can also lead to accidents.

But, that’s not all. A new study has found that aside from impaired attention and focus, lack of sleep may cause brain shrinkage along with a range of serious health issues.
Brain Shrinkage Study
Poor sleep quality may negatively affect the size of your brain, according to a study conducted by Claire Sexton, DPhil. The study included 147 adults aged 20 to 87. 35% of those who suffered from poor sleep quality had a reduced volume within the major brain regions throughout the study compared to those who had adequate sleep.
What happens during sleep is that the brain eliminates toxic waste, including the protein buildup that attacks the brain cells. Sleep deprivation causes the neurons to deteriorate, which in turn triggers additional health problems and even possibly accelerate the onset of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
According to Claire Sexton, “There are effective treatments for sleep problems, so future research needs to test whether improving people’s quality of sleep could slow the rate of brain volume loss. If that is the case, improving people’s sleep habits could be an important way to improve brain health.”
Obesity And Diabetes
Alzheimer’s is not the only serious health issue linked to sleep deprivation. According to the National Sleep Foundation, more 65% of Americans are overweight or obese due to insufficient sleep and an unhealthy lifestyle.
There’s mounting evidence confirming that diabetes and sleeping patterns are closely linked. In fact, a number of studies have found that people who suffer from sleeping disorders, such as insomnia, have higher insulin resistance and have more difficulties managing their diabetes. Insulin resistance occurs when the body can’t use the insulin it produces.
Tips To Improve Sleep
  1. Turn off all the lights.Sleeping in total darkness is beneficial for proper production of melatonin, a hormone that keeps the sleep cycles under control.
    2. Find the appropriate room temperature for you.Sleeping in an extremely cold or hot room temperature can affect body temperature, and thus affect sleep quality.
    3. Avoid using TV and computer before bedtime. The blue light released by screens, which resembles daylight, suppresses melatonin production as it tricks the body to think it’s daytime.
    4. Take a hot bath. A hot bath is extremely effective not just for relaxing the muscles, but also for regulating body temperature.
    5. Keep your gadgets away from the bed. Electronic devices including cell phones, tablets, laptops etc. emit electromagnetic waves which affect melatonin production.
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