Sleep is essential for everyone, especially children and teens. This is because their bodies are fragile and still developing. Most teens are deprived of sleep because they follow an unorthodox schedule. They often sleep during the day and study at night. In other words, their sleep patterns are disturbed. Once the sleep patterns are disrupted, they often suffer from lack of sleep. One may be led to believe that the only harm that comes out of this is that they may sleep during the class. However, the problem is far worse. The risk of obesity increases drastically when teens do not get enough sleep.
It is a well-known fact that if you do not sleep properly, your metabolism is disrupted. Once the metabolism slows down, the body goes into conservation mode. This is exactly the reason why one should not starve to lose weight. If the metabolism slows down and the body goes into conservation mode whatever you consume will be stored in the body as fat.
When teens stay up at night, they consume snacks. Snacks already have a high fat content and they start gaining weight. Also, when teens stay up at night their appetite hormone balance is disturbed. The level of leptin, which is a good hormone and controls hunger, goes down. Moreover, another hormone, ghrelin, which is responsible for letting the body know that you need more fat, increases. When the level of ghrelin increases, you feel hungrier.
How Much Sleep Does An Average Teen Require?
Most teens do not get enough sleep. Not only do they stay up at night, they hardly get any sleep during the day. This not only increases the risk of obesity, but it also takes a toll on one’s health. If teens fail to get enough sleep, stress hormones in their body increase significantly. This increase in stress hormones does not affect teens immediately, but it has long-term side effects.
Stress hormones affect the heart. Blood vessels are at a risk of being damaged. Once the blood vessels are damaged, teens may initially experience high blood pressure problems. Eventually, this condition may lead to cardiac issues and even result in cardiac arrest. To counter these effects, an average teen requires at least 9 hours of proper sleep.
Many people have misconceptions regarding proper sleep. Merely sleeping 9 hours will not do the trick. The sleep teens get should be during the night and in a proper sleep environment. Therefore, teens should be encouraged to get proper sleep to decrease the risk of obesity.