HGH and Sleep
Human growth hormone plays a significant role in the endocrine system of a person and stimulates the process of children’s growth. (Children become taller not only due to some physiological factors). HGH is produced by our brains when we are sleeping and this process performs the restoration and repair function of sleep.
The pituitary gland produces this hormone in brain, which is a complex protein. It does not only influence the process of maturation, but also helps to keep your body tissue healthy in an older age.
HGH is released by the pituitary gland non-continuously, like a pulse. The process of sleep and physical exercises bring on the production of HGH
Usually, HGH is mainly released in the 1st part of the Stage 3 sleep at night in the majority of healthy people.
The growth hormone is not released if a person does not sleep at night when he is supposed to do this. In case of such deprivation of sleep, the additional HGH is produced when the person sleeps.
There were no experiments held when people are hidden from the daylight or other environmental options that play the role of circadian hooks. The participants of the experiment could make their own schedule for sleeping. Such experiments took place a number of times, and the researchers controlled the level of HGH in blood and examined the time when it was released by the pituitary gland. They concluded that the highest level of HGH production while sleeping reduced greatly. The slow wave sleep (SWS) period, which came first, was shorter than the 1st REM period, which came after it.
The scientists came to the conclusion that the length of the sleeping stages can influence the quantity of the released HGH while sleeping.
When a person is in his middle age, the amount of produced HGH become lower. This is the result of interest that scientists have in some supplemental hormones to remain young. Not all of the medical authorities, and FDA is among them, approve the effectiveness of these supplements. (They are approved only in cases of some pathologies, but not as a weapon against aging.)
Some of the professional athletes use growth hormone supplements (recombinant of the famous somatropin) to improve their results. This is illegal in many professional leagues. The use of them is equal to the using of steroids. They do not have such dangerous side effects as steroids, but the authorities try to control this. Nevertheless, the relation between growth hormone and sleep linked with the relation between healthy sleep and good athletic results are too evident to be treated as just a coincidence.
Recently, the ESPN issued an article promoting the idea that a good sleep works as a “magic pill” for athletes to obtain best results. Professional sportsmen and trainers recognize the value of regular healthy sleeping.
Sometimes the athletes face the problem of normal sleep schedule due to their travelling to various time zones for different competitions or trainings. Some of the sportsmen face the problem with immuno-suppression and this can be a result of chronic sleep reduction. It is really true and not only in athletes, but in ordinary people as well, the deprivation of sleep can quell the immune system.