How to tell if you’re sleep deprived, even if it doesn’t feel like it.
1. You’re craving sugar and carbs
Lack of sleep produces a hormone called ghrelin. Ghrelin makes you hungry for fatty and sugary foods. It’s also harder to stop eating. Leptin, the chemical that tells you when you’re full, is reduced with less sleep.
2. You get clumsy
One study found that going one night without sleep will give you the same hand-eye coordination as a drunk person.
3. Your skin isn’t looking good
When you’re sleep deprived, your cortisol levels spike. This can dehydrate your skin, and break down the collagen that keeps it firm. In other words: you look older.
4. You get sick more easily than usual
Do you sleep for less than 7 hours a night? Then you’re nearly 3x more likely to catch a cold than someone who sleeps for at least 8 hours. You produce infection-fighting proteins while you sleep. The less sleep you get, the weaker your defenses.
5. You’re more emotional than usual
A study found that people who stayed awake for 35 straight hours were 60% more reactive to negative images. Brain scans showed changes in the prefrontal lobe the area of the brain that helps keep your emotions in check.
So, get some sleep. Your skin, diet, immune system, and brain will thank you!