Elf for Health: Day 1 of the H&H Advent Calendar

25 days of a Hip and Healthy Christmas: Tips to make this the best holiday season yet

On the first day of Christmas… Catch up on some SLEEP 

I went to a wellbeing workshop this morning and something that came out of it was that women all over are fantasising about getting more sleep. It appears that getting the recommended 7-9 hours of good quality sleep is rare these days. As soon as our lives get busy, and Christmas is the year’s busiest time of all, this seems to be one of the first things to be sacrificed. But not enough sleep has a knock on effect. Here is why getting your forty winks may be one of the best things you do this Christmas…

No Sleep = Bigger Appetite
Scientists have recently found a connection between sleep and appetite. When you are sleep deprived, your body makes too much ghrelin – the hormone that makes you hungry and it lacks in leptin – the hormone that tells you you’re full up.

Sleep For Your Skin’s Sake
It is not a myth – sleeping will improve your skin. Skimping on sleep stresses out the body which can cause the body to produce to much excess pigment that can appear as light brown patches on your face (I should know – I have them!). And I don’t need to tell you about the dark circles under your eyes – who wants those. You need to sleep to allow your body to fully absorb all the fluids in your face and to help your skin to repair itself.

Sleep to Reduce Stress
I don’t need to tell you that little sleep makes us cranky, inefficient and stressed. When you are rushing about the house trying to get everything done before you go to bed, stop and think for a moment. Say to yourself “Is what I am doing urgent and important?” If the answer is yes than you better carry on. But I am willing to bet that 80% of the time it is a ‘no’ (late night cleaning anyone?). It is much better to get the sleep, feel bright and energetic the next day and finish off what you were doing early in the morning.