With so much stress in today’s world from work, technology, family commitments and other obligations, it can be a challenge to get a good night’s sleep each evening. Luckily, there are herbal remedies that can help you fall asleep naturally because lack of sleep can have negative effects on your health.
A recent U.S. study published in the journal Sleep Medicine found that people who get less than six hours of sleep a night are more likely to have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and be obese. Additionally, this is the first trial that looks at differences between racial and ethnic groups and learned that the effect is strongest among African and Hispanic Americans.
“This is important, since racial minorities are generally at increased risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity,” study leader Dr. Michael Grandner told Reuters. “And if they also tend to have more sleep difficulties, that could be making things worse.”
The study took place at the Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology at the University of Pennsylvania. Researchers looked at data from a nationwide survey from 2008 and divided the results from more than 5,000 participants into three groups: very short sleepers getting less than five hours a night, short sleepers getting between five and six hours and long sleepers getting more than nine hours.
Through this, the researchers learned that very short and short sleep are associated with poor health. Very short sleepers have twice the likelihood of high blood pressure and high cholesterol compared to people sleeping seven or eight hours a night. Very short sleepers are also 75 percent more likely to develop diabetes and have a 50 percent higher chance of being obese. Similarly, short sleepers have a 20 percent greater risk of high blood pressure and obesity.
Grandner said that quantity of sleep isn’t solely what’s important. Other aspects like insomnia, sleep apnea and waking up a lot during the night could also be related to heart disease, diabetes and obesity.
Additionally, Kristen Knutson, who studies sleep and heart health at the University of Chicago Department of Medicine, told Reuters that there’s no consensus on the ideal amount of sleep for health. This is because there are variables that determine how much sleep different people need, but studies show most people need between seven and eight hours to be at their healthiest.
“Like most aspects of health, too little is bad for you and too much is also likely bad for you,” Grandner told Reuters. “It is hard to say that short sleep is worse than long – it’s just that we currently have a better idea of why short sleep is detrimental to health.”
Sleep better naturally If you have trouble getting enough sleep and need a natural sleep remedy, try Western Herbal and Nutrition’s Sleep Aid. It uses the essential amino acid L-Tryptophan. This is a precursor for o melatonin, a hormone involved in sleep patterns, and L-Tryptophan is the only substance that can be converted into serotonin to maximize sleep.