There’s simply no better way to restore your energy and get your mind and body ready for the day ahead than with a good night’s sleep. Restorative, deep sleep offers a multitude of health benefits that positively affect nearly every aspect of your health and wellness. But not all sleep is the same. In fact, your body goes through three primary stages of sleep to reach that deep level of sleep where your body can heal and recover. In this blog, we’re taking a closer look at the different stages of sleep to learn how they impact your body and contribute to good health for years to come.
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7 Health Benefits of Good Sleep
We all know how important it is to get a good night’s sleep. After all, can anything really replace that feeling of waking up refreshed and recharged in the morning? But did you know that quality sleep actually affects practically every aspect of your overall health and wellness? There’s ample evidence showing just how important good sleep is for both your body and mind.
According to years of research, some of the top benefits of good sleep include:
- Lower risk of heart disease.
- Stronger immune system.
- Stabilized blood sugar levels.
- More energy throughout your day.
- Improved focus and productivity.
- Better mood.
- Sharper memory.
What are the 3 Stages of Sleep?
You may not realize it, but your body actually goes through various stages of sleep. During each stage, your body experiences unique changes that are all important to helping you feel fresh and rejuvenated the next day.
Take a closer look at the three primary stages of sleep and how they affect your body:
1. NREM Stage N1
First, we have to distinguish between REM sleep and non-REM sleep. The first three stages of sleep are considered non-REM while the final and deepest level of sleep, usually occurring within an hour and a half of falling asleep, is referred to as REM sleep.
In the first stage of non-REM sleep, our bodies gradually begin to transition from being awake to falling asleep. This is the first and lightest stage of sleep and generally only lasts a few minutes. If you wake up from just NREM stage 1, you may not even realize that you fell asleep. Think of when you may slightly drift off on a long car ride or flight and snap back awake quickly. This means you only reached the first level of sleep. During NREM stage N1, eye movement slows, muscles begin to relax, and your heart rate and breathing will gradually slow down.
2. NREM Stage N2
The next stage of sleep, NREM stage 2, takes up the largest percentage of your time sleeping. This is the preliminary stage of sleep before you enter deep sleep. In NREM stage N2, you may still be easily awakened. During this second stage of sleep, you have no eye movements, your body temperature begins to drop, and your heart rate and breathing pattern continue to slow down even more.
3. NREM Stage N3
In the third and final stage of non-REM sleep, you’re now entering deep sleep. Also commonly referred to as slow-wave or delta sleep, the third stage is critical as your body begins to experience a range of health benefits. Stage 3 is where it’s more difficult to wake up suddenly and your body gets a chance to restore and recover.
During stage N3, your heart rate and breathing reach their slowest rate, there are no eye movements, your body reaches a state of relaxation, and delta brain waves become present. Additionally, your body begins to heal and recover, which includes tissue repair and growth and even cell regeneration. During NREM stage 3, your immune system also strengthens.
What About the REM Phase?
But that’s not all. In fact, there’s actually a fourth stage of sleep. This is known as REM sleep and occurs roughly an hour to an hour and a half after you fall asleep. REM sleep is notable as the time when most people tend to have very vivid and memorable dreams. REM sleep is further broken down into two distinct phases: phasic and tonic. The key difference here is with your rapid eye movements. The phasic REM sleep phase includes rapid eye movements while tonic REM sleep does not.
During REM sleep, your body experiences many unique transitions. Rapid eye movements become more common, muscles will become paralyzed, breathing and heart rate increase slightly from NREM stage 3, and brain activity shows a significant increase.
Conclusion – The 3 Stages of Sleep (and What they Do to Your Body)
We all know how important a good night’s sleep is, but it isn’t always that easy to attain each night. However, by learning more about sleep, we can better understand this essential part of our lives and how it makes an impact on nearly every aspect of our overall health and wellness. When you break down the 3 stages of sleep (plus REM sleep), you can see the differences that each stage makes and why it’s so important to get longer period of undisturbed sleep. If you’re constantly just stuck in stage 1 or stage 2, you’re missing out on some of the most important regenerative benefits of a good night’s sleep.
In addition to a healthy sleeping schedule, you can also boost your overall physical wellness by adding an organic health supplement into your diet. Our innovative health supplements, developed by the experienced and innovative team at PhytAge Labs, can help you address your current health problems and boost your overall wellness.Contact us today to learn more about our complete line of all-natural health supplements. Then, together, we can get you started on the journey to better sleep and better health.