This is Exactly What Happens to Your Body When You Don’t Get Enough Sleep

This is Exactly What Happens to Your Body When You Don’t Get Enough Sleep

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This is Exactly What Happens to Your Body When You Don’t Get Enough Sleep

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A good night’s sleep helps us feel better, so why is it that many of us are depriving ourselves of it? Lack of sleep can lead to serious mental and physical health problems. Some of them include high blood pressure, impaired concentration, increased risk for certain cancers, and weight gain.

Overtime, lack of sleep can contribute to depression; it “disrupts our neurotransmitters, noradrenaline, and dopamine levels,” Connie Rogers, Certified Integrative Nutritional Holistic Health Coach, says. It has also been proven that insomnia has the strongest link to depression.

Insomnia increases belly fat

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“The body hangs onto fat when cortisol levels are out of balance and the body won’t release it willingly if we don’t sleep,” Connie Rogers, Certified Integrative Nutritional Holistic Health Coach, says. “Additionally, insomnia interrupts glucose metabolism, increasing fat storage and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.”

Higher risk for breast cancer and cardiovascular disease

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“Studies link sleep loss to alterations in the neuroendocrine, immune, and therefore the body’s inflammatory response,” Rogers says. “Both these diseases are linked to disruption of circadian rhythm by exposure to light at night may occur mostly with shift and night workers.”

See: Do These Things to Lower Your Risk for Breast Cancer

Increased susceptibility to colorectal cancer

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Shorter duration of sleep may increase your susceptibility to colorectal cancer, Rogers says. “Sleep disorders are known to alter metabolism and increase cortisol levels and obesity.” Obesity increases the risk for colorectal cancer.

Hunger cues are thrown off track

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Sleep deprivation confuses your hunger cues. “Sleep balances leptin and ghrelin, the hormones that send signals to start and stop eating,” Rogers says. “Chronic insomnia keeps the brain craving for more food.”

Lost efficiency and performance at work

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Lack of sleep causes your brain to fog. “There are significant deficits in gray matter when we suffer from chronic insomnia,” Rogers says. “Restorative sleep is needed to maintain brain immunity.”

Premature aging

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Without enough sleep telomeres – the ends of our chromosomes – shorten. “If we eat junk and garbage during the day, we have cellular exhaustion and weakness at night,” Rogers says. “Insomnia and reduced nutrition to the epidermis leaves it unable to repair damages.”

See: 16 Everyday Habits That Are Aging You

Depression

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“Sleep disorders are a core symptom of depression, along with suicidal tendencies, and prevents quality of life,” Rogers says. “Lack of sleep disrupts our neurotransmitters, noradrenaline, and dopamine levels. The catch 22-Prolonged stress increases anxiety and insomnia.”

Elimination systems

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“Insomnia disrupts all elimination systems,” Rogers says. “Sleep is a restorative process, so when we don’t get enough, toxins recycle.”

Insomnia doubles the prostate cancer risk

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“Studies suggest that the worse the sleeping problems, the higher the prostate cancer risk because of reduced melatonin levels,” Rogers says.

Insomnia causes migraines

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“Predominant theories involve the health of our hypothalamus along with the health of our gut microbiome,” Rogers says. “The gut microbiome interacts and works in connection with the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis for a restful night’s sleep.” If this interconnection is disrupted by intestinal permeability we can experience insomnia, migraines, and IBS, she adds.

See: Surprising Things That Trigger Migraines

Your blood pressure increases

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Less sleep leads to higher blood pressure because the body is working harder to produce cortisol, also known as the “stress hormone.” As your insulin level rises, your blood pressure rises. A study has shown that shorter sleep actually worsens hypertension. Research has indicated that people with high blood pressure suffer the effects of even one night without enough shuteye hours.

Impaired memory

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Did you forget someone’s name? Maybe you completely blanked out and forgot what you had scheduled to do today. Lack of sleep impairs your memory and causes decreased alertness. It can also cause mood changes and brain deterioration among the elderly.

We become irritable

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Lack of sleep may have a significant effect on mood. According to research from the University of Pennsylvania, subjects that only slept for 4.5 hours a night for one week reported feeling angry, stressed, sad, and mentally exhausted.

Accident prone

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Getting behind the wheel when you are tired is a huge mistake. According to WebMD, “sleep deprivation was a factor in some of the biggest disasters in recent history: the 1979 nuclear accident at Three Mile Island, the massive Exxon Valdez oil spill, the 1986 nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl, and others.”