Get the Right Amount of Sleep for a Healthier Heart

By Moiz

sleep for healthier heart

sleep for healthier heart

There is much more to keep the heart healthy than eating right and regular exercise. Getting enough sleep is equally important to reduce the risk of heart disease. According to research studies, people with sleep problems such as insomnia have a shorter life expectancy as compared to those who consistently get the right amount of sleep. Sleeping for 7 to 8 hours is considered good for heart health and not getting enough sleep is associated with increased risk of heart attack or stroke. 

What is the optimal amount of sleep?

For adults, getting 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night is considered the optimal amount of sleep. Respect your body needs for sleep and aim to sleep for this much hours per night to maintain a healthy heart. Research studies suggest that people who sleep less than six hours per night tend to develop cardiovascular risks including high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and more significant inflammation as compared to those who sleep for longer.

Recognizing a sleep problem

Do you wake up frequently at nights or feel tired after spending a restless night? Do you feel sleepy or fatigued for the whole day? Consider these as the signs of sleep apnea. Other symptoms include snoring, choking, or stop breathing during sleep. These are the symptoms which many people don’t realize that they do, so it is important to confirm with your partner who shares the bed with you. Severe sleep apnea especially ate the middle or old age can increase the risk of premature death. More common signs of a sleep problem include staying asleep, and difficulty falling asleep. People who are suffering from heart disease often have low energy levels than sleepiness.

Sleep Deprivation and Heart Health

Sleep is essential for a healthy heart, and those who don’t sleep enough are high risk for conditions highlighted above regardless of age, or lifestyle habits like smoking, or drinking. Getting quality sleep is important if you don’t want to hurt your heart. It is not entirely understood why lack of sleep is detrimental to heart, but researches believed that sleeping for too little causes disruptions in the biological process like glucose metabolism, the pressure of blood, blood glucose levels and inflammation. The same concept applies in the case of oversleeping.

Patients with sleep apnea (a condition which causes a man to awake frequently throughout the night) often have compromised heart health. In such patients, the certain chemical is activated that interferes with the body ability to achieve extended periods in which blood pressure and heart rate are lowered. As time passes, this leads to high blood pressure during the day and a greater chance of developing heart disease. Many research studies have revealed the relationship between sleep apnea and heart disease. According to these studies, people with sleep apnea are more likely to develop congestive heart failure than men without having this night-time sleep disorder. This shows that poor sleeping can put you at risk of heart disease as well. 

Also Read: Beverages That Boost Your Heart Health

Ways to improve sleep

  1. Report symptoms to your health care specialist- According to research studies, there are numerous sleep disorders and associated health concerns, so it is important to pinpoint the problem. You must accept the fact that if you are not sleeping there is something wrong with your system and consider an excellent treatment to get rid of the problem.
  2. Get your problem treated- Fix an appointment with a sleep psychologist to know about the therapies for sleep apnea. Patients with insomnia may benefit from cognitive behavioural therapy with a sleep expert.
  3. Shed extra pounds- Being overweight or obese increases the risk of heart disease. Improved sleep helps to lose weight especially belly fat. According to research performed by Johns Hopkins, people with diabetes those who lost belly fat improved sleep regardless of their gender or change or how they lose weight.

Tips to get better sleep

  1. Adhere to a sleep routine. Go to bed at the same time each day and wake up at the same time each morning.
  2. Go for a morning walk to get some natural light earlier in the day.
  3. Get enough physical activity but be sure not to exercise a few hours before bedtime.
  4. Avoid using computers, laptops, and phones within a few hours of bedtime.
  5. Do not eat or drink during the night especially alcohol and high-calorie foods.
  6. Create an environment for a sound sleep by keeping your bedroom cool, dark and quiet.

Make sleep a priority Try to get in bed and wake up at a predictable time. You need 7 to 8 hours of sleep to function well the next day. If you are left with certain things by the end of the day, let it be, try to complete them the next day.

13 Tips to Have a Healthy Liver

By Stella Green

For a healthy liver, it is necessary to get timely vaccinated for viral infections like hepatitis B. Dietary changes are also one of the important steps taken to improve or maintain your liver health. 

Our liver plays a crucial role in keeping our body functioning. It is believed that the organ is vital because it performs more than 500 functions including processing everything you eat and drink. It transforms nutrients from the food we eat into essential blood components. The liver helps in the storage of essential vitamins and minerals and production of key proteins and enzymes that works to maintain hormonal balance in the body. Also, it assists our immune system in fighting infections and removing microorganism from the blood. The liver also helps in the bile production which is essential for digesting fats in your diet.

In the US, around 1 in 3 people have fat in their liver and body. Having non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (having excess fat stored in the liver) may lead to life-threatening conditions, including liver failure and liver cancer. Therefore, you need to keep the liver healthy and functioning because without it there is no life.

Care for your Liver

How to keep the liver healthy? There is nothing tricky about keeping your liver healthy. It’s all about following healthy lifestyle habits. Taking care of the liver is more about what you are eating or doing to nourish the liver. Here are 13 ways to look after your liver:

  • Follow a balanced diet-Eat mindfully daily by highlighting the foods that will keep your liver healthy. A reduction in carbohydrates and total calories can improve the fat stored in the liver. The idea is to skip high fat and high sugar meal because high levels of fats in the blood may give rise to fatty liver disease. For a healthy liver eat fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, cereals, bread, rice, and whole grain. For fats, you can go with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats such as nuts seeds, vegetable oil, and fish.
  • Keep an eye on your body weight- If you are obese or are overweight, you may be more likely to expose to the risk of fatty liver disease. Weight loss is important to reduce the risk of this fastest growing forms of the liver disorder.
  • Have an active lifestyle- Regular physical activity is a key to the healthy body including a healthy liver. Exercising regularly helps your body to burn triglycerides for fuel, which assists in reducing liver fat. An exercise program including brisk walking or cycling and weight training may improve your liver function.

Also Read: Everything you need to know about a Liver Function Test

  • Stay hydrated- Toxins that affect your liver and kidneys build up when you are dehydrated. Dehydration may have a direct impact on the ability of the liver to detoxify the body properly. So, to take care of the body, you need to remain hydrated. Hydration is essential, so drink at least eight glasses of water a day.
  • Limit alcohol consumption- Excess alcohol can damage or even destroy your liver cells. Over time liver damage may lead to the building of fat in your liver which causes swelling or scarring of the liver, also called as liver cirrhosis. Speak to your doctor and discuss what amount is right for you.
  • Manage your medications- Medications, if taken more than the prescribed amount, or you have used the wrong mix then you may cause harm to your liver cells. If you are unsure about whether the medicine you are using may cause liver damage, talk to your doctor. Make sure you are following the instructions carefully.
  • Practice safe sex-Hepatitis B and C, including A, are the most dangerous forms of hepatitis viruses as they can cause long term liver damage. Hepatitis C can be transmitted through unprotected sexual intercourse or practicing sex with multiple partners.
  • Maintain hygiene- Wash your hands with soap every time you use toilet., changed the diaper of your baby, or before preparing or eating food.
  • Get vaccinated and protect yourself from hepatitis Viruses– Vaccines for hepatitis A and B viral liver infections are available. Get vaccinated to keep you safe from these viral infections.
  • Avoid toxins- Environmental toxins are the most harmful when it comes to affecting the liver health. Other things that may affect the health of the liver include poor diet, infectious organisms, and alcohol. Exposure to harmful chemical in the environment including benzene, disinfectant, heavy metals, cigarette smoke, and pesticides can backlog the liver as it attempts to deactivate the effects of these poisonous molecules. Infectious organisms like hepatitis viruses are most dangerous and a major cause of liver inflammation. Any sort of chronic infection can damage liver cells. Therefore, it is vital to get liver protection to limit your direct contact with these harmful chemicals. Quit smoking, wear a mask whenever you step outside, and make sure your house is ventilated.
  • Do not share personal hygiene items- Personal items such as a razor, nail clippers, or toothbrushes should not be shared with anyone because these can carry blood and body fluids that may be contaminated.
  • Avoid contaminated needles- penetration of dirty sharp instruments or needles may be considered as unsafe practices. You may expose to viral infections with intravenous use of contaminated syringes and needles. Make sure your tattoo maker is using clean needles for a tattoo you or while doing body piercing.
  • Avoid the use of illicit drugs- Illicit drugs including marijuana, cocaine, or heroin that are used non-medically may cause damage to liver cells.

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