The winter is over and the long nights of June are very appetizing, even if they rob us of our sleep and affect our appearance. Because you know that yawning, dark circles under the eyes, dull skin and daytime fatigue are ‘side effects’ of little sleep. If you add the alcohol so present in the evening, the consequences are even worse.
The skin renews itself during sleep. New cells replace the old ones, restoring the epidermis. But also, while you sleep, lots of hormonal and metabolic changes take place. However, if you sleep less than necessary, all these processes are altered. Lack of sleep, for example, has been shown to distort memories, affect mood, increase the risk of accidents and promote hypertension and type 2 diabetes. Obesity is another consequence. Among other reasons, this happens because, the day after we have slept little, we tend to eat more and throw ourselves mainly into sweets and fast food.
The advice from all the experts is “don’t skimp on the hours of sleep your body needs”. The recommendation is to sleep between 7 and 9 hours a day from the age of 18 to 64. From 65 onwards, 7 to 8 hours of sleep a day are recommended. Just one point: contrary to what many people think, sleep hours are not stored and, in fact, sleeping more than 9 or 10 hours does not add any benefit. In fact, it can be as harmful as not getting enough sleep. As for the nap, the advice from the experts is not to last more than 20-30 minutes.
These signs can indicate a lack of sleep: involuntary nodding off during the day (a huge risk at the wheel!); needing caffeine to stay awake; having trouble concentrating and remembering; losing interest in sex; feeling tired and irritable… Remember, too, that caffeinated drinks after 5pm, late dinners, noises and lights in the bedroom (including electronic ‘pilots’) disrupt natural sleep/wake cycles. Don’t forget that if you want to look your best this summer!