As we approach the winter solstice, the nights are longer. Unfortunately this doesn’t always correspond with the hours of uninterrupted sleep we get during the holidays. Most nights when our head hits the pillow, we begin thinking about all the things we have yet to do. There are cards to be sent, gifts to be purchased and goodies to be prepared. The only thing we don’t think about is how our lack of sleep may affect our diet, mood and immunity, further contributing to our ‘seasonal stress’.
A recent study investigated the relationship between sleep duration/quality of sleep and diet/hormones of obesity as part of an effective lifestyle strategy. Cell-to-cell signaling proteins secreted by fat tissue and certain hormones received particular interest. These proteins play a vital role in several metabolic pathways such as glucose regulation and fatty acid breakdown. It has also been inversely correlated with body fat percentage in adults and found to increase in proportion to hours of sleep received. A certain hormone secreted by cells in the stomach and pancreas, was found to stimulate hunger and in this study was found to be inversely associated with perceived sleep duration. It was concluded that long and uninterrupted sleep was linked with a better diet and better hormonal profile.
Lack of adequate sleep can also affect our mood and mental performance. To be sharp for all those door-buster sales we need to be able to remember the special book for Aunt Susie or the fact that Grandpa can only use a Peaberry Coffee. In one published review researchers found that inadequate sleep reduced cortical response to incoming stimuli resulting in a disruption of newly learned material. The study also demonstrated strong feeling of sleepiness, negative moods and stress that could easily be taken out on others (like the lovely person who cut in front of you in that long check-out line).
While you are out shopping this holiday season, don’t forget to to pick up extra facial tissues. A research conducted in Germany studied how sleep affects you immunity. They believe sleep primes immune cells and provides the timing signal for our circadian clock and that sleep deprivation can result in the break down of the immune system resulting in being more susceptible to illness for longer periods of time.
We all know how wearing your support stockings or support socks can improve your stamina and your quality of life. So this holiday season be kind to yourself…put your support stockings or support socks on when you get up in the morning and wear them until bedtime to keep you leg circulation in tip top shape and get plenty of sleep to help manage stress and mood and improve your immunity.
Wishing you all a very Healthy Holiday Season,
Vanda and the Support Hose Store Team