Most adults are sleeping about 6 hours and 27 minutes every night, according to a study released by Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Research suggests most people need at least seven hours of sleep for wellbeing.
Too much sleep isn’t good, either, however.
The study followed individuals during a four-month period, tracking different sleep measurements via their Apple Watch. Nearly 3 million sleep nights were recorded. Among the findings:
- 31.2% slept more than seven hours.
- 39.7% slept six to seven hours.
- 20.3% slept five to six hours.
- 8.8% slept fewer than five hours.
The report is one piece of an eight-part study on heart health.
“Because heart health is important for everyone, the Apple Heart and Movement Study team is beginning a series to introduce participants to the American Heart Association’s framework of Life’s Essential 8 — a set of key measures for improving and maintaining cardiovascular health that is applicable to all ages,” per the report.
In addition to sleep, the researchers discussed the link of heart health to physical activity, nicotine exposure, body mass index, blood glucose, blood lipids, diet and blood pressure.
Healthy sleep cycles
The article said there are four stages of sleep that your body repeats during a night. The first two stages slow the body’s rhythms, the third repairs day-to-day damage to the body and the final stage — rapid eye movement sleep — is key to healthy sleep.
“Studies have shown that missing REM sleep, which is also when we dream, may lead to memory deficit and poor cognitive outcomes, as well as heart and other chronic diseases and early death,” CNN reported.
As reported by Deseret News, “Previous research has linked poor sleep quality to heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, Type 2 diabetes and other heart-related challenges.”
Tracking your sleep
According to multiple news sources on the web, when it comes to sleep, both quality and quantity factor into boosting overall health. For those who don’t have a device like an Apple Watch — there are other brands that track sleep — or who just want more tools to help your health, you’re in luck!
Insider says keeping a sleep journal can help you find the cause of your sleep troubles.
Recording time logs for your sleep, how many times you wake up during the night and how many naps you take in a day are some of the suggested things you can track in a sleep journal.
There are multiple apps like “Sleep Cycle” or “Shut Eye” that are meant to help the user develop better sleep patterns. These apps can compare your personal sleep data with the world’s, provide relaxing sounds to fall asleep to and detect snoring or sleep talking.
The app “CBT-i Coach” suggests a more therapeutic approach to handling sleep, helping users to prevail over anxious or traumatic thoughts through cognitive behavioral therapy practices.