INDEPENDENT NEWS

Too Little Sleep Could Leave Kiwis Open to Winter

Published: Fri 16 Apr 2010 09:47 AM
Too Little Sleep Could Leave Kiwis Open to Winter Illnesses According to National Care Chemist Campaign
A lack of good quality sleep can make people more prone to colds and flu as well as reduce the effectiveness of vaccinations according to Care Chemist. New Zealand’s fastest growing community pharmacy group has launched a nationwide campaign to draw attention to the health risks associated with not getting enough sleep over winter.
Care Chemist CEO, Nicolette McDonald believes that a large number of New Zealanders are still not aware of how a lack of sleep can negatively impact on their health, productivity at work and emotional wellbeing: ‘Research recently published in the Archives of Internal Medicine journal in the United States has also shown that sleep deprivation can actually weaken a person’s immune system, meaning that they may have lower resistance to illnesses such as the flu and common cold. Obviously, this is not a position that anybody wants to be in coming into winter.’
She points out: ‘Sleep aid products are one of our fastest growing segments, demonstrating that more people are now aware of the importance of getting enough rest. However, a study by Massey University’s Sleep/Wake Research found that about a third of adults are sleep deprived and one in four has insomnia. These individuals are at a much higher risk of various health problems, including obesity, heart disease and diabetes.’
According to Anthony Yee, owner of Care Chemist Northcote, there are a number of actions that can be taken to improve the length and quality of sleep.
‘It is important to get at least seven hours sleep every night,’ says Anthony. ‘Otherwise, your immune system may be compromised and you will be more vulnerable to illnesses. We recommend trying a more natural, holistic approach first. Quite often, people are struggling to sleep because they are stressed and their adrenal system has gone into overdrive. In these cases, simply increasing the amount of exercise may help as it releases stress-busting endorphins.
‘Supplements and herbal remedies can also be beneficial and don’t require a prescription. It is believed that natural products such as Vitamin B, Vitamin C, Zinc and Echinacea can boost the immune system, reduce stress and consequently help with sleeplessness. Of course, if any cases of insomnia last for longer than a couple of weeks, you must go to the doctor as it could be a symptom of something more serious.’
As well as providing advice on getting an adequate amount of sleep, Care Chemist will also be offering winter immune boosting tips, flyers and special deals on sleep aid products in-store. A free self-care card, focusing specifically on sleep problems, is also available. On top of that, Care Chemists are always on hand to discuss any issues and possible solutions with their customers.
For more information on Care Chemist, visit www.carechemist.co.nz
ENDS

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