Regular bathing and grooming is only a start. If good personal hygiene matters, sleep should also be a top priority. When this area is ignored, the entire body can suffer. This is especially so if weight loss and personal fitness are concerns. Even the best diet and exercise plans can be easily derailed if sleep is neglected.
Medical researchers say that poor sleep is one of the most prevalent problems encountered in society. This is due to a number of factors, including:
- Staying up too late and/or getting up too early
- Consuming drugs such as caffeine and nicotine throughout the day
- Over-stimulation in the evening hours
Impacts of Poor Sleep Hygiene
Poor sleep can have a number of negative effects that may ripple throughout a person’s entire life. Some of the side effects that can occur when poor sleep habits are ingrained include:
- Constant fatigue
- A tendency to be moody, irritable or quick to anger
- Lack of concentration
- Loss of coordination, which can also impact ability to drive
- Tardiness and/or absenteeism
- Eating problems, including binge eating, loss of appetite
- Dependency on stimulants
- Difficulty in interpersonal relationships
Sleep and Weight Loss
Getting into a normal sleep routine can assist with weight loss efforts for a variety of reasons. When the body is deprived of sleep, a person will simply be more likely binge eat, late-night eat and may lack the energy necessary to exercise.
When a good sleep schedule is created and actions support proper sleep hygiene, the entire body – and mind – can benefit. Here are some tips that can help improve sleep hygiene:
Set a Schedule and Stick to It
The body craves routine. This is especially so when it comes to sleeping patterns. Set a realistic bed time and wake time each day. Try to stick with it on workdays, weekends – all the time.
Develop Good Eating Habits
Food and ability to sleep do go hand-in-hand. To promote healthy sleep, a person has to not only eat healthier, but also smarter. It’s best to avoid large meals before bedtime. Spicy, sugary and heavy snacks should also be avoided. When possible, stop eating about two hours before that set bed time.
Avoid Use of ‘Drugs” Before Bed
Drugs don’t have to be illegal to wreak havoc on the likelihood of enjoying a good night’s sleep. It’s best to avoid legal drugs such as caffeine, nicotine and alcohol before bedtime. Stimulants like caffeine, for example, can keep the body pumped up, preventing sleep entirely. Nicotine and alcohol can get in the way of a person enjoying a truly restful night’s sleep.
Building exercise into the regular routine can also help promote healthier, more restful sleep habits. Exercise doesn’t have to take place at night either to have an impact. Even light exercise can help a person improve sleep hygiene by reducing stress and burning off extra energy.
Losing weight and getting into shape doesn’t just call for diet and exercise. Proper sleep hygiene can play a critical role in the process. When sound habits are developed, the entire body can benefit.