Condition Spotlight

Sleep plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout your life. Getting enough quality sleep at the right times can help protect your mental health, physical health, quality of life, and safety.

The way you feel while you’re awake depends in part on what happens while you’re sleeping. During sleep, your body is working to support healthy brain function and maintain your physical health. In children and teens, sleep also helps support growth and development.

How Sleep Builds Relational Memory

Relational memory is the ability to remember arbitrary or indirect associations between objects, people or events, such as names with faces, where you left your car keys and whether you turned off the stove after Read More

Natural Ways to Combat Insomnia

Did you know that close to 48 percent of Americans have in the recent past reported occasional lack of sleep with a further 22 percent reporting chronic insomnia? This widespread insomnia has turned most of Read More

Lack of Sleep Increases Unhealthy Abdominal Fat

New research from Mayo Clinic shows that lack of sufficient sleep combined with free access to food increases calorie consumption and consequently fat accumulation, especially unhealthy fat inside the belly. Findings from a randomized controlled Read More

Sleep more to lose weight

Understanding the underlying causes of obesity and how to prevent it is the best way to fight the obesity epidemic and help people lose weight, according to Esra Tasali, MD, Director of the UChicago Sleep Read More

How Meal Timing Impacts Sleep

Sleep and meal timing can impact hormonal levels that, in turn, influence satiety and food intake. Studies associate sleeping and eating late in the day with poor dietary quality and higher obesity risk but differences in sleep Read More

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We spend up to a third of our lives asleep. Although some hard-driven people may view sleep as an inconvenience that curtails productivity and leisure activities, slumber is certainly no waste of time. In fact, sleep may play a more crucial role than diet or exercise in fostering optimal health. Sleep is a natural restorative, an antidote to the damage done to our bodies during the course of the day. It allows the body to replenish its immune system, eliminate free radicals, and ward off heart disease and mood imbalances. As an essential part of the daily human cycle, sleep is a determining factor in the state of a person’s health.

A National Sleep Foundation Survey found millions of Americans are suffering from daytime sleepiness—43% of adults say that they are so sleepy during the day that it interferes with daily activity. Drowsy driving causes at least 100,000 car accidents in the U.S. each year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; 62% of adults reported driving while feeling drowsy. And 60% of children under the age of 18 complained of feeling tired during the day, while 15% admitted to falling asleep at school.

The quantity and quality of sleep vary from person to person, but how well and how long one sleeps is ultimately the result of physical and psychological influences. Not only does stress, illness, and anxiety contribute to sleep disorders, but so can external circumstances, such as a noisy sleeping room, as well as disturbed biological rhythms due to night-shift work and jet lag. A shortened attention span, the loss of physical strength, and difficulty in responding to unfamiliar situations are all common symptoms of sleep disorders.