Lack of sleep can cause weight gain, early aging – Plainview Daily Herald

A good indicator of people’s physical, mental, and emotional well-being can be seen in the quality of sleep they receive each night. If people do not get enough deep, restful sleep, then their body is not able to recharge and can start to break down in many different ways and damage the body.

The purpose of sleep is so the body will have time to repair and rebuild its cells, to cleanse itself, and recharge with energy for the next day’s activities. The body needs sleep to resist disease, maintain strength and endurance, increase vitality, improve attitudes and moods, and even slows down the aging process.

Chronic sleep loss has a negative effect on metabolism, hormonal function, and the pace of aging. The lack of sleep can interfere with the body releasing hormones such as cortisol, and growth hormones which influence muscle strength, the ratio of muscle to fat, and cause people to age faster. Excess cortisol can damage a person’s health over a period of time and cause decrease memory, low energy, low immune system, weight gain, sleep disorders, and thyroid dysfunction. There are also increased risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and Type 2 diabetes.

The National Sleep Foundation explains that most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep each night, teenagers need 8-10 hours, elementary age kids need 9-11 hours, preschoolers need 10-13 hours, toddlers need 11-14 hours, and babies need 12-18 hours.  

Caffeine is known to disrupt the normal sleep pattern and prevents people from reaching the deep stages of sleep. It also blocks the effects of serotonin and melatonin in the brain which are necessary to cause people to fall asleep and remain asleep. Caffeine can be found in coffee, tea, soft drinks, chocolate, hot chocolate, coffee flavored ice cream, diet pills and even some decongestants and migraine medications.

Many people with sleep problems drink alcohol thinking they will sleep better, but studies show that alcohol can decrease the REM stage of sleep, which is the repair stage. This causes people to sleep lightly and feel tired and groggy the next day.

Research suggest to improve sleep, it is important to go to bed and get up at the same time every day, keep the bedroom dark, quiet, and cool, avoid caffeine in the evening, don’t eat big meals before bedtime, get regular exercise in the day, relax quietly before bedtime with a warm bath, put pets in their own bed for they can disrupt sleep, read or listen to soft, relaxing music before bedtime.

I have used Composure for over 15 years on the nights I need help in getting to sleep. It is a combination of organic herbs that can help reduce the effect of stress on the body and help people to relax and sleep. One or two capsules can be taken during the day or three to four taken at night to help with sleeping.

The quality of sleep a person receives each night can be a good indicator of their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. If you are not able to recharge your body each night and need more information on how to improve your sleep, call, email or order my book, Fibromyalgia and Fatigue: A Recipe for Feeling Fit and Healthy. 

(Debra Pugh, author of the book, Fibromyalgia and Fatigue: A Recipe for Feeling Fit and Healthy, has a bachelor’s degree, is a certified personal trainer, and a certified sports nutritionist. She has over 25 years of experience in counseling people in Health and Wellness such as weight loss, exercise, nutrition, increased energy, balance, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, auto-immune disorders, arthritis, hormones, toxins, cleansers, and supplements. For more information or to buy a book, call 806-298-5504, email, or website at



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