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SleepAs we ease into the new year, so many people are looking to live healthier lives. Eating right, exercising, and finding ways to reduce stress are all things we’re exploring and implementing into our lives. Research over the past few years, however, has shown that one of the things we can do to most improve our health is so something we can do each and every day, without putting a lot of thought or effort into it: Get more sleep.

Many studies have found that people diagnosed with sleep disorders have seen significant health improvements once being treated for those disorders. Doctors have linked this largely to the fact that the patients were simply able to get more sleep. They’ve gone on to discover that more sleep can give a better quality of life to everyone, and not just those with a sleep disorder.

To begin with, more sleep can benefit brain activity, such as improving memory and sharpened one’s attention. Sleep has also shown to spur creativity in many people, and improve their mood stability, reducing how often the person felt like they experienced dramatic mood swings throughout the day. Something else that we are also seemingly always looking for is a way to manage our stress levels, and it turns out just a little more sleep can do this too!

Along with all the mental benefits of sleep, more sleep can also improve the ways our body functions. Things like heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and many other serious health issues are more likely to affect those that get less than a full night’s sleep on a regular basis. More sleep can also improve our body’s ability to fight off illness. This can lead to a longer lifespan. That’s right – people who regularly get their full 8 hours will on average live longer than those who don’t.

If you’re looking to exercise more or lose weight, you should also try and get more sleep. Professionals and amateurs alike find that their athletic abilities are improved after a full night’s sleep. Those who sleep more also find that they lose weight a little more easily.

So, the verdict is in: Sleep more. You’ll see improvements in many areas of your life, and you’ll probably just feel better. We aren’t saying to ignore your responsibilities by any means! Just make getting your full night’s rest a priority!