The Power of Sleep, Part 1

“I’ll sleep when I’m dead.”  We’ve all heard the expression.  Turns out, it’s not such a great plan.  Sleep is like an investment, and if you put a little effort into sleeping better, you’ll live a life that’s happier, healthier, and generally more awesome.

sleep-deprived1

This guy needs some sleep

That’s why we’re doing a two-part series on the power of sleep.  Today, we’ll show you some of the amazing benefits that come with getting better sleep.  Next week, we’ll give you some tips if sleep isn’t coming so easily.

So without further ado, here are FIVE amazing benefits of getting a good night’s sleep:

You’ll be smarter.

This one is pretty obvious.  How can you expect your brain to be at its best, when it’s running on 3.5 hours of sleep?  Numerous studies show that you will have an improved memory, a better attention span, faster reaction time, and get better grades if you get a solid eight hours.

You’ll be a better athlete.

You don’t have to be training for the Olympics to want to be at your best.  One study at Stanford University found that football players who slept well for 7-8 weeks improved their sprint time and had less fatigue.  Another study of swimmers in 2008 found that participants who slept well improved their swim times.

You’ll (probably) live longer.

Scientists can’t be 100% sure on this one, since it’s hard to track subjects over a long period of time.  Nevertheless, the general consensus of research and common sense indicates that sleeping better leads to a healthier and longer life.  So if you’re attitude actually is, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead,” it might come to that sooner rather than later.

You’ll be better looking.

Now I’ve got your attention.  A 2010 study from the British Medical Journal indicates that people who slept well before being photographed were rated as more attractive by study participants than people who were sleep deprived before picture day.

You’ll have better sex.

We certainly know how to save the best for last.  If you are in a relationship, studies indicate that people who are caught up on their Zzzz’s are generally happier with their sex life.

Tune in next week for our tips on getting a better night’s sleep.