What is something that we all love, that might not always be a priority, but we could all use it more? The answer is sleep! Everyone needs it, and everyone achieves a great night’s sleep differently. Time, temperature, location, lighting, and how we spend the hours awake will contribute to the quality and quantity of sleep we get. Sleep ultimately affects everything we do during waking hours. Sleep affects every function in the body and contributes to our health from the inside out. It helps every process inside the body and directly affects mental function and the brain’s capacity to process information while awake. 

Good “sleep” goes through five different cycles, leaving you feeling rested and energized in the morning. Sleep should range between eight to ten hours on average, to affirm the completion of each period.  Everyone has an individual sleep style, and being aware of the best sleep conditions for you is essential in ensuring the best night’s sleep. Pay attention to your sleep habits during a great versus a poor night’s sleep. Tracking these habits can help determine what schedule works best for you and how your behavior affects your sleep outcome.  

Rebecca Herrmann, RDN, LDN

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