Clarity’s Corner – Counting Sheep or Getting Enough Sleep?

Clarity's Corner (3)

We’re back with another installment of Clarity’s Care Corner. This time she tackles the importance of sleep as highlighted in a new study by the University of Rochester Medical Center. Keep this info in mind as you carry on your evening tasks and prioritize sleep!

Counting Sheep or Getting Enough Sleep?

We all know that sleep is important. Restful sleep helps to “recharge” our system, decreases stress hormones, and reduces fatigue. What you probably did not know that it is also vitally important to protecting your brain from toxicity, damage and even debilitating diseases like Alzheimer’s. In a recent study conducted at the University of Rochester Medical Center, researchers discovered that it is during sleep that the brain clears out potential harmful waste that builds up during the day.

Sleep_woman

Deep Sleeping = Deep Cleaning

As you sleep your brain pumps spinal fluid into the brain to “flush out” waste into the circulatory system and eventually to the liver for removal. Because the process is very energy intensive it is difficult for the brain to perform it during the day, which is already over-active and preoccupied with performing everyday tasks. Instead, researchers found that sleeping brains were able to clear out much more amyloid-beta, the plaque building protein associated with Alzheimer’s.

If you want to keep your brain healthy and free of toxins, strive for 7-8 hours of sleep each night. Nothing new there, but this information just may be the motivation you need to make it more a priority! On a recent journey during nurses week I visited several medical surgical floors, Maternal and Child Health, and the Operating Room. The chief complaint among the nurses was having difficulty going to sleep at night. Take a look at how you prepare for the sunset time of your day! Remember to BREATHE on a regular basis, wind down at least an hour before bed time, and make adequate sleep a top priority.

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