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The Sleep Solution

Why Your Sleep Is Broken and How to Fix It

By W. Chris Winter, M.D.
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The Sleep Solution by W. Chris Winter, M.D.

The Sleep Solution (2017) discusses the fundamentals of sleeping. It explains why keeping a consistent rhythm and schedule is important, and how insomnia is not a lack of sleep, but rather a result of dealing poorly with substandard sleep. You’ll learn how to improve your sleeping patterns and, as a result, improve your quality of life.

Key idea 1 of 9

Sleep is essential for your overall health.

When it comes to the benefits that sleep brings, the list is long. Here are some of the major functions for which sleep plays a pivotal role.

To get rid of waste, the brain uses the so called glymphatic system. This area of the brain was discovered in 2015 by Aleksanteri Aspelund and Antoine Louveau, two researchers who were working independently of each other.

The glymphatic system removes toxins including amyloid beta, a protein found to accumulate in the brains of patients with Alzheimer’s disease.

This system is 60 percent more productive when you’re sleeping, which is why it’s important not to skip sleep, as your brain will miss the chance to rid itself of waste products. If you’re wishing to bolster your brain’s clean-up rate, a study with rodents at Stony Brook University in New York State concluded that it appears to work best when you’re sleeping on your side.

Sleep also has a positive influence on your heart and immune system. Several studies have shown that poor sleep increases the risk of high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes and heart failure. It can also contribute to an unsynchronized heart rhythm, which in turn can lead to blood clots in your system – a major cause of strokes.

Another benefit of good sleep is that it gives your immune system a boost. So if your parents ever told you to go to bed to avoid getting sick when you were young, they were right.

In 2015, a study at the University of California found that, after being exposed to the cold virus, those who slept six hours or less were more likely to develop a cold than those who slept for seven hours or more.

In summary, the importance of sleep shouldn’t be underestimated. In the upcoming blinks, you’ll learn that many people believe they can operate at their best without sleep – but this simply isn’t the case!

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