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Sleep = underrated. We have so many responsibilities these days - job(s), family, friends, errands, self-care, etc. Life is busy and we do the best we can to make the most of our time, but this often leads to staying up way too late to fit it all in. Prioritizing healthy eating and exercise alone isn’t going to cut it - we actually need sleep just like we need food & water. The saying, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” is definitely not one you want in your vocabulary! 

Why is sleep so important? How you feel during your waking hours can be indicative of the quality of your sleep. When you sleep your body is working to support a lot of the functions that you use on a daily basis. Getting enough quality sleep can make a big difference in your mental and physical health as well as your overall quality of life.

Getting behind on sleep can make keeping up with daily life seem like more of a struggle! You might feel sluggish, less motivated, and even like you’re a step behind where you want to be throughout the day. You might be more likely to forget things, have trouble concentrating and staying on task, and get stressed out more easily. If you don’t give your body the chance to properly work it's magic every night, you’re bound to feel those negative effects

Did you know that most adults require 7-9 hours of sleep per night to function at an optimal level? People who regularly get less than 6 hours sleep are at a higher risk of diabetes, stroke, heart disease, cognitive decline, etc. 

With that said, a restful night’s sleep is a luxury for some (new parents, people with multiple jobs, those with insomnia, etc.) and we are all just doing the best we can. It’s important to ask for help when you need it because we all need sleep to be our best selves

Next time you’re scrolling in bed at night ask yourself this, “what would best serve me right now?”. If you really do need a few to wind down, do what you need to do, but if the answer is SLEEP, honour that. You will thank yourself the next morning.

Rebecca Owusu, plant-based + gluten-free lawyer, wife, + dog mom 

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