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Should Sleep Be Included in Your Antioxidant Lineup?

August 17, 2018


Sleep can help your body deal with oxidative stress

We all know antioxidants are good for us. That’s why we sip on cups of green tea, pay way too much for bushels of blueberries and munch handfuls of almonds when all we want is a chocolate croissant. But what exactly are antioxidants, why should we fear oxidative stress and should we be adding sleep to our antioxidant lineup?

What Exactly Are Antioxidants?

In simple terms, antioxidants are healthy compounds found in (mainly plant-based) foods that have the ability to stop or delay damage to our cells by removing waste products that could do it harm. This includes vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, the mineral selenium, as well as lutein and lycopene.

Why Should We Fear Oxidative Stress?

Our normal metabolic processes, along with certain environmental factors like pollution and smoking, release highly reactive compounds called ‘free radicals’ into our systems. Their reactive nature gives these compounds the ability to bind to normal body cells and damage it. This kind of cell damage ultimately leads to the occurence of diseases like cancer.

Should We Be Adding Sleep to Our Antioxidant Lineup?

According to a recent study conducted at Columbia University in New York, sleep supports antioxidant processes. Well, in fruit flies at least. Vanessa Hill and Mimi Shirasu-Hiza found that fruit flies with short-sleeping mutations share a common sensitivity to oxidative stress. So, what does that mean in layman’s terms? Their finding supported their hypothesis that sleep increases an organism’s defense against oxidative stress. So, if a fruit fly is naturally inclined to sleep for shorter periods of time, they are likely to die off sooner.

At the moment, these research findings are only based on experiments with fruit flies, but the biologists are confident that further testing will determine the same to be true for larger organisms like mammals and humans.

There you have it - yet another important reason to ensure that you get sufficient rest at night. If you want to ensure that your sleeping environment is optimal for sound sleep, we highly recommend taking a look at your bed, mattress and bedding. The surface you sleep on plays a very important role in paving the way for high quality sleep, so it might be time to invest in an upgrade.

Keep an eye on the blog in coming weeks and months for more interesting, sleep-related info. In the meantime, feel free to get in touch if you have any questions regarding our wide selection of comfort-graded sleeping surfaces.


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