Recent events have people around the world trying to stay as protected from infections and germs as possible. Did you know getting sufficient sleep can drastically improve your immune function?
The Link Between Sleep and Your Immune System
A 2015 study from the University of San Francisco showed that people sleeping less than six hours a night were four times more likely to catch a cold than those who got seven or more hours of shut-eye. In fact, sleep was more important than any other factor in determining a person’s risk of getting a cold – more important than age, stress level, or whether or not they were a smoker. Sleep matters the most!
The CDC says one in three Americans isn’t getting enough sleep. And beyond increasing your likelihood of getting a cold or the flu, poor sleep can lead to a host of additional poor health outcomes, including diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, and stroke.
How Does Sleep Help Immunity?
While you sleep, your body produces T cells that fight off pathogens. These T cells move through your lymph nodes and attach to and kill infected cells. People who get more sleep show higher activation of T cells. Sleep also triggers the release of proteins called cytokines. Your body needs to increase production of certain cytokines to boost your immune response when you have an infection or when under stress . Sleep deprivation can lower the production of these protective proteins. There is also evidence that lack of sleep could lower white blood count, indicating poorer immune function.
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends adults aged 18 – 60 years sleep at least seven hours each night, and it’s clear that sufficient sleep can protect your body against infection. You can also make sure your immune system is boosted by reducing stress and ensuring the personal care products you use aren’t releasing dangerous toxins into your body.
Getting Better Sleep
So how can you ensure you’re getting sufficient sleep? Sarah Ballantyne, Ph.D, recommends setting a bedtime for yourself that’s at least 8.5 hours before your alarm goes off in the morning. This will guarantee at least 7.5 hours of sleep, after accounting for the time it takes to drift off and brief arousals during the night.
There are some Morrocco Method products that can help you wind down at the end of the day and signal your body that it’s time for sleep. Relax in a soothing bath with the Sea Salt Body Scrub, letting its moisturizing oils de-stress your body. You can also try our Scalp Massager & Invigorator to soothe and stimulate blood and air flow to your scalp prior to bed. And don’t forget to add a refreshing facial spray to your bedtime routine to revitalize your face and lock in moisture after a long day. Morrocco Method’s Ocean Air Facial Spray is made with liquefied quartz crystals and essential oils that will center you before slumber.
In addition to adding our immune-boosting products to your evening routine, there are other ways to wind down and make sure you’re primed for sleep. Avoid blue light or electronics before bed, and watch your caffeine consumption late in the day. You can try some deep breathing exercises and meditation, or listen to relaxing music. If you are still struggling to fall asleep, you might speak with your physician about natural supplements that can aid your sleep.
Sleep is important, and Morrocco Method is here to help! If you want to learn more about natural, organic products that promote better sleep and boost your immune function, you can start in our shop. Sign up for our newsletter at the bottom of our website to receive 10% off your first order, plus a free gift and free shipping!