Sleep is something natural that we normally think as of a necessity. There are many things that are happening to our bodies during sleep making it one of the most useful times of the day. Of course, our bodies naturally recover from exercise and illness while we sleep but do you actually know exactly what your body does when you are asleep?
Brain sort out
Even though your consciousness goes blank, your brain doesn’t stop. While you are not busy doing anything else, your brain has time to process everything that happened during the day. The information gets sorted into categories which later on become your long term memory. So if you want to remember something, sleep on it.
Hormones play a crucial role in the functioning of our body. During sleep, high amounts of different hormones are released to boost growth, recovery and control sleep cycles. Melatonin controls how fast you fall asleep and wake up and can be influenced by the amount of light and the temperature in your room. Growth hormone on the other hand repairs damage and helps growth (dah!).
Our stress hormone, cortisol, naturally decreases just after we fall asleep. This way the body is relaxed and ready to be restored for another day. However, the hormone rises again just after you wake up. That’s the reason you are perky and crave that coffee in the morning. Make sure to get enough sleep as cortisol levels tend to increase if you didn’t have enough sleep the night before.