Get Healthy CT: ‘Sleep for Health’

All people, no matter what age, need sufficient sleep to maintain their overall health. According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, sleep plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout life. Getting enough quality sleep at the right times can help protect your mental health, physical health, quality of life and safety.

To underscore the importance of sleep in maintaining overall health, Get Healthy CT, the regional wellness coalition of hospitals, health departments and other health and social service providers, is offering free information, advice and links to local resources in its September Monthly Health Feature, “Sleep for Health,” which may be found online at

The information includes:

• How Much Sleep Do We Really Need?

• Why is Sleep Important?

• Are Kids Getting the ZZZZZs They Need?

• Improving Sleep Hygiene

• 5 Foods That Help You Sleep

• Physical Activity Impacts Overall Quality of Sleep

• “Get More Sleep,” Chapter 8 of A Year of Being Well by the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation

• Get Moving Today Activity Calendar

• The Color Run Comes to Bridgeport

Following is an excerpt from “Get More Sleep,” Chapter 8 of A Year of Being Well:

“There is so much research that has been done to prove that getting enough sleep is critical at every age. A lack of sleep can increase the risk of becoming overweight or obese and lead to other behavioral issues. Getting plenty of sleep each night can help your family members prevent childhood obesity and maintain a healthy weight. Most children under the age of five need 11 hours or more of sleep per day. Children ages five to 10 require 10 hours of sleep or more per day. Children ages 10 to 18 need at least 9 hours of sleep per day. There are many things you can do to help your kids get a good night’s sleep. Creating a bedtime routine and going to bed at a time that allows your kids to get enough sleep will help.”

The packet also has information about the Color Run which is coming to Bridgeport in October. Billed as “the happiest 5K on the planet,” the Color Run is an untimed race in which participants are doused from head to toe in different colors at each kilometer. It starts at 9 am Saturday, Oct. 17, at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport. Join the Get Healthy CT Team and support our partner the YMCA, and you will save money off the entrance fee. To register, see the Color Run flyer at

Most information in the packet is available in English and Spanish. Direct access is available at An archive of previous monthly features is also available.

Get Healthy CT focuses on a different obesity prevention topic each month and provides resources in print and online. Printed information packets are also available in some area libraries, community centers, regional health departments, and other locations.

Get Healthy CT is a community coalition that works in the greater Bridgeport, New Haven, and Greenwich regions to make the “healthy choice the easy choice.” Get Healthy CT provides information about being healthy and connects people to local resources to support healthy eating and physical activity through its website More than 150 large and small businesses and nonprofit and community organizations have joined the coalition, along with individuals and families.

Obesity in the Region:

Obesity rates in the United States are increasing due to factors such as portion sizes, food choices, lack of convenient supermarkets in neighborhoods, consumer advertising, food costs and more sedentary lifestyles. Likewise, it is clear that obesity contributes to other serious health complications including diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. According to the Greater Bridgeport Community Health Assessment (2013), survey respondents in Bridgeport, Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, Stratford, and Trumbull report obesity rates ranging from 16% to 32%. The Greater New Haven Community Health Index (2013) lists obesity rates in the New Haven region from 18% to 31%.


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