What chronic lack of sleep does to you: ‘It makes sick and fat”

Friday is the International Day of Sleep. Good to be aware of in our sleep to stand still, says slaapprofessor Eus van Someren. Because we sleep in the Netherlands are not as good as we should and that makes us fat and unhealthy. Ten questions about sleep.

Why is sleep so healthy?

“Many people think that nothing happens during sleep, but that is indeed so. Sleep is recovery. Especially for the brain. There occur in our brain all sorts of processes that are important for the bodily functions.”

“The nocturnal processes need time. They get not, then you would restore less good. You see that often after one night of less sleep: you feel weak and cranky. You’re less alert and more susceptible to flu or colds. In the long term it increases the chance of diseases such as diabetes. In addition, we will be thick.”

How can it be that we are fat from a lack of sleep?

“That we be thick of the chronic lack of sleep is because all processes have enough time to take place. Some processes are by too little sleep in the war sent. That can have surprising effects. If you are less want to eat to lose weight, can too little sleep cause, for example, that’s very difficult.”

“Lack of sleep causes us to spend more impulsive and more snacking. Anyone who may be experiencing a night has a strikethrough, it recognizes the need for snacking and eating fat the next day. The same applies for movement. When you lack sleep, it is much harder to get the bank to come in and you sports shoes to attract than when you awoke.”

According to Van Someren has one night less of sleep all effect: “You’re less alert and more susceptible to flu or colds.”

A good night’s sleep is therefore a basic prerequisite to living a healthy life?

“Sure. Life style advice is now mainly focused on food and exercise. But sleeping there is absolutely. What concerns me is even the main pillar of the trinity. Lack of sleep has an effect on your satiety, and also you want to move.”

What we can do for a better night’s sleep?

“We can learn from living. Who stand every day at the same time. This regularity is important. Especially getting up at the same time.”

“Light in the morning makes sure that your evening is better to fall asleep.”
Eus van Someren, slaapprofessor

“And do in the morning immediately open the curtains. Light in the morning makes sure that your evening is better to fall asleep.”

Light plays anyway an important role?

“Artificial light has a great influence on our sleep behaviour. Especially blue light in the evening disrupts the rhythm of our own biological clock. The more blue light, the more alert you are, and how difficult it is to fall asleep. Ban the tablet and the mobile phone from your bedroom. And use them anyway when you are planning to do within two hours to go to sleep.”

How much should we sleep?

“Many people think that eight hours of sleep is sacred. They panic if they have those eight hours. But you probably have a lot of adults sufficient to seven hours.”

“The quality of the sleep is more important than the duration.”
Eus van Someren, slaapprofessor

“The focus would be to me a pity that the quality of our sleep can be on the expensive. In the Netherlands we sleep mostly on long enough. But the quality of our sleep is not always good.”

How is that?

“There are two forms of poor sleep. For example, you can sleep when you just had a baby have gotten that often during the night awake. With that kind of broken nights, you are the next morning, slower and less alert. Another form of poor sleep is insomnia. That is something very different.”

What is insomnia?

“With insomnia, you have, in principle, sufficient time and the right circumstances to have a good night, but you manage not to fall asleep. During the day you feeling miserable and tense.”

“Good sleepers clean up already asleep the excitement of the day.”
Eus van Someren, slaapprofessor

“Good sleepers clean up already asleep the excitement of the day. Just think of the saying ‘sleep on it’. Issues and concerns are after a good night’s sleep is still the same, but you can better deal with it.”

What is the cause of insomnia?

“With insomnia, people are because of construction is probably not right in the middle of the night clean up of the tension. That is probably even rather the cause than the result of insomnia.”

“With this new insight, we can insomnia to better understand and hopefully resolve. We do large research to the Dutch Herseninstituut in Amsterdam. There we have the help of many insomniacs. Anyone who insomnia suffers, can see if he or she can help us by giving a questionnaire to fill in.”

Professor Eus van Someren is head of the department Sleep and Cognition of the Dutch Herseninstituut, professor of integrative neurophysiology at VU university and professor of psychiatry at the Amsterdam medical centre (UMC.

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