KBP5 Education: Article 5, March 2020
BACKGROUND: COVID-19 AND YOUR HEALTH?
Today more then ever it is not only important but critical that we do everything we can to strengthen our immune systems. With so many people getting infected with this virus, what is the best thing you can do to keep safe and healthy? Yes, washing your hands is important, yes having proper hygiene is important, and yes practicing social distancing is very important. But the single best thing we all can do is strengthen our immune system. You might ask yourself what is my immune system and how does my sleep affect it?
EDUCATION: THE SLEEPING SECRET
The immune system is the body's defense against infectious organisms and other invaders. Through a series of steps called the immune response, the immune system attacks organisms and substances that invade body systems and cause disease. The immune system is made up of a network of cells, tissues, and organs that work together to protect the body.
When we sleep, our immune system release cytokines, which are proteins that help promote sleep. When there is an infection or inflammation, and when you are under stress, the body releases more cytokines to regulate immunity and fight against infections and inflammation. Lack of sleep may decrease the production of these protective cytokines. In addition, the production of antibodies and infection-fighting cells decreases when we don’t get enough sleep.
Not only does lack of sleep put us at risk of colds and flus, but it also increases the risk of serious long-term health problems. Research shows that long-term sleep deprivation increases the risk of diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease.
For a good night’s rest (and healthier body), adults are advised to sleep 7.5 hours a night. They should not exceed more than 9 hours a night. Teenagers should get 9 hours of sleep.
WEEKLY CHALLENGE: 30 MINUTES OF NO ELECTRONICS BEFORE BED?
This week’s challenge is to get 7.5 or 9 hours of sleep every night and get off all electronics for 30 minutes before bedtime. Continue to eat 3 meals a day and plan at least one meal a day with love ones. Find time to take a 5- minute breather by sitting quietly and take some deep breaths for 5 minutes.
Get 7.5 or 9 hours of sleep, eat 3 meals a day, dine with someone you love, and breathe!
PLAN YOUR LIVES AND LIVE YOUR PLAN!
RECHARGE • FUEL • CONNECT • RECOVERY