New research will seriously improve your beauty sleep. There are a lot of ways we squander our precious sleep hours: Netflix binges, late nights out, catching up on Instagram stories… Whatever your form of sleep procrastination, we’ll do just about anything to put off that awful moment of laying in the dark before we drift off to sleep. While it’s tempting to fill your evening hours with distractions until your eyes are so tired that you collapse into sleep way past your bedtime, staying up late has some seriously negative effects your beauty and well being.
Negative Side Effects of Poor SleepBesides getting bags under your eyes from sleepless nights (the worst!), there are a whole host of domino side effects of poor sleep. First, too little sleep can throw the hormones that control hunger out of balance, causing you to crave foods that are rich in fat and carbohydrates and snack more often than if well rested. Then, one study at the Skin Study Center of University Hospitals Case Medical Center found that poor-quality sleepers showed more signs of aging, including reduced elasticity of the skin, fine lines, and uneven pigmentation. Finally, to really kill your vibe, a lack of sleep can even lead to decreased interest in sex.
The Solution Scientists Suggest To Fall Asleep FasterLuckily, researchers have recently discovered a simple five-minute trick that’ll help you fall asleep faster. A study at the Sleep Neuroscience and Cognitive Laboratory at Baylor University had 57 participants split into two groups. The first group spent five minutes before bed writing a list of accomplishments for that day. The second group spent the same five minutes writing a list of things they wanted to accomplish the next day. The result? Participants who made a to-do list for the next day fell asleep significantly faster. “We live in a 24/7 culture in which our to-do lists seem to be constantly growing and causing us to worry about unfinished tasks at bedtime,” says lead study author Michael K. Scullin. His team hypothesizes that writing a to-do list allows people to off-load their worries. Interestingly, the more detailed of a list the participant wrote, the faster they fell asleep! This research aligns with a previous study that suggests keeping a “worry journal” helps with sleep. That said, we like the new proactive and positive take of a to-do list in this study. To conclude, while giving yourself a pat on the back for a hard day’s work is certainly still in order, to fall asleep faster try this five-minute trick and let us know how it goes!
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