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mom sleepWith the weather so cold I find it hard to get up early in the morning especially if I have gone to bed late.  I know I should be getting more sleep, but as a parent there is always so much to do that inevitably I often wonder where the day went.  While I start to wind things down at 9 pm, the more I do the more I cut into my needed sleep time.

Anyone who has taken care of a toddler who missed his nap knows that children need plenty of sleep and that a lack of sleep affects their moods.  But, adults also need sleep to be at our best!  While there’s nothing like a good night’s rest to get reenergized and look your best, lack of sleep can have long term consequences.  Did you know that lack of sleep contributes to more than just bags under your eyes?  People who are sleep deprived are at increased risk of obesity amongst a multitude of other issues.  A good night’s sleep can keep you from gaining unwanted pounds.  A tired brain turns to something that makes us feel good so late night snacking increases and we consume calorie dense high carb items. While an occasional late night is not an issue, over time the calories add up and we gain unwanted weight.  So how much sleep should we be getting?

Have you seen the new sleep guidelines from the National Sleep Foundation? http://www.stonehearthnewsletters.com/new-sleep-recommendations-expert-panel/sleep-pregnancy/  The new guidelines recognize the variation in our sleep needs based on age.  While most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep, recommendations changed for other age groups.

Check it out and then work on what you can do to get yourself and your family to bed on time.  For me, I am going to choose sleep instead of checking on emails before bed.  I’ll probably be in a better mood to respond later in the morning! 

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