IN THE MEANTIME, HERE ARE 10 FASCINATING FACTS ABOUT SLEEPING YOU MAY NOT KNOW:
1. SLEEP CAN BOOST YOUR IQ
Researchers from the Max Planck Institute in Munich, Germany found that “a good night’s sleep can do wonders for women’s intelligence.” In a study of 160 adults – 72 women and 88 men – scientists concluded the following:
“Sleep spindles, which are associated with higher IQ scores, were boosted when women entered dreamless sleep.”
– Sleep spindle activity was similar for men, but only during naps that did not exceed 100 minutes.
What does this mean? Well, for a woman, you should aim for 7-8 hours of sleep per night; for a man, you may want to consider a power nap during lunch time.
2. BLOOD PRESSURE DROPS, TOO
Nocturnal dipping is the scientific term used to define when blood pressure plummets at night. Blood pressure, like many other body functions, follows our circadian rhythm (day/wake cycle). Generally, our BP will drop 10 to 15 percent during the nighttime.
A normal, healthy adult’s BP will drop 5 to 7 points during sleep.
3. HEART RATE AND BREATHING S-L-O-W-S
You’re probably starting to pick up on the pattern: everything (almost!) slows down when we’re sleeping.
Sigrid C. Veasy, MD, a neuroscientist and professor of medicine and University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology provides his insights: “The intestines quiet down in the nighttime, and the liver goes from trying to detoxify during wakefulness to trying to build and synthesize when you’re sleeping.”