We'll add "going to bed on time" to our New Year's resolutions
If you find yourself staying awake way past your bedtime, lying in bed scrolling on TikTok, watch another episode of your favourite Netflix drama, or reading just one more chapter of your book, you might want to rethink.
Because unfortunately your choice to see the wee hours could be costing you your health.
According to Dr Karan Raj, who boasts a whopping five million followers on TikTok, we need to stop delaying going to bed, especially as we get older.
In a video, he shared that by putting off sleep regularly, you are in fact missing out on a really important sleep phase.
Dr Raj explained: “The early part of the night is dominated by NREM (non-rapid eye movement) sleep.
“This is important because NREM sleep includes the deeper restorative slow-wave sleep that’s coupled with the biggest release of growth hormones in your 24 hours.”
This is especially important for men, Dr Raj says, because 70% of their growth hormones, which are crucial for both their metabolisms and tissue repair, are released during this phase.
And if you’re in your 30s and 40s, the importance of getting this crucial part of sleep rises again as the total amount of growth hormone released within 24 hours will decrease.
He explained: “As the night goes on, the ratio of NREM to REM changes and you get progressively less NREM and more REM sleep. So if you delay your bedtime, you cut short the time you spend in slow-wave sleep, so you get less of that juicy growth hormone.”
Dr Raj advises hitting the hay at the same time every night as much as possible to make sure you bag every bit of this essential growth hormone that you can.