Sleep With Super Power

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“I prefer insomnia to anaesthesia.”-Antonio Tabucchi

The amount of sleep is important just like any other basic needs in human life like food or water. The lack of sleep may shorten the life. It has been observed through statistics that those who have slept for 5 hours a day have lived less by a decade in comparison to individuals who slept for 7 hours a day. The level of testosterone found in the former was lesser for his counter part who was senior by ten years. This is equally applicable to male and female. Sleep has a catastrophic impact health and wellness. Impairment of reproductive organs were observed in the female who had lack of sleep.

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Impact of Sleep On Learning

It was experienced that proper sleep is necessary before learning and also after learning for better retention. The memory is drastically affected due to lack of sleep. Brain acts just like sponge full of water. If you do not sleep properly the elements of learning are not absorbed.

Two groups of people were experimented where one group was allowed to sleep for properly and other group was deprived of the sleep. When MRI can was done for both the groups, surprising results were observed in both the groups. Almost 40% of the deficit of memory was found for the group which was deprived of sleep in comparison with the group who slept properly. This is matter of concern even for children because I will never like that my child should fail in exam due to learning disabilities or poor memory retention and spoil his whole career just for lack of sleep. I never preferred the computers with lesser memory because it bounced back the intake of new file. How can I afford to less storage in my brain for less memory retention experience if it is due to less number of hours of sleep! Proper sleep converts more amount of short term memories to long term memories in adequate quantity.

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Aging And Dementia

The constant deprivation of sleep may cause different types of disorders. This may lead to Alzheimer’s disease too. Is it advisable to take sleeping and other related drugs and treat Alzheimer’s disorder or major neurocognitive disorder like Dementia? It is always better to take more water to treat thicker blood in comparison to deadly side effect of pills to treat the same with pills. In the same way if healthy quality of sleep is made an habit you are not only saved from drugs but also free from these deadly diseases.

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Sleep And Cardiovascular System

Improper sleeping experience has very bad effects on cardiovascular systems too. It was depicted in TED talk by Matt Walker that a global experiment performed on 1.6 billion people across 70 countries twice a year, and it’s called daylight saving time. Now, in the spring, when we lose one hour of sleep, we see a subsequent 24-percent increase in heart attacks that following day. In the autumn, when we gain an hour of sleep, we see a 21-percent reduction in heart attacks. Isn’t that incredible? And you see exactly the same profile for car crashes, road traffic accidents, even suicide rates.

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Sleep And DNA Genetic Code

In his further explanation Walker also explained the consequences of ill effect of improper sleep to DNA. Lack of sleep will even erode the very fabric of biological life itself, your DNA genetic code. So here in this study, they took a group of healthy adults and they limited them to six hours of sleep a night for one week, and then they measured the change in their gene activity profile relative to when those same individuals were getting a full eight hours of sleep a night. And there were two critical findings. First, a sizable and significant 711 genes were distorted in their activity, caused by a lack of sleep. The second result was that about half of those genes were actually increased in their activity. The other half were decreased.

Now those genes that were switched off by a lack of sleep were genes associated with your immune system, so once again, you can see that immune deficiency. In contrast, those genes that were actually upregulated or increased by way of a lack of sleep, were genes associated with the promotion of tumours, genes associated with long-term chronic inflammation within the body, and genes associated with stress, and, as a consequence, cardiovascular disease. There is simply no aspect of your wellness that can retreat at the sign of sleep deprivation and get away unscathed. It’s rather like a broken water pipe in your home. Sleep loss will leak down into every nook and cranny of your physiology, even tampering with the very DNA nucleic alphabet that spells out your daily health narrative.

Finally he gave two pieces of advice for sleep.

1. The first is regularity.

Go to bed at the same time, wake up at the same time, no matter whether it’s the weekday or the weekend. Regularity is king, and it will anchor your sleep and improve the quantity and the quality of that sleep.

2. Keep Your Room cool.

Your body needs to drop its core temperature by about two to three degrees Fahrenheit to initiate sleep and then to stay asleep, and it’s the reason you will always find it easier to fall asleep in a room that’s too cold than too hot. So aim for a bedroom temperature of around 65 degrees, or about 18 degrees Celsius. That’s going to be optimal for the sleep of most people.

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Take Away

1. Shorten your sleep and shorten your life.

2. Sleep is not a luxury but non negotiable biological necessity.

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Krgoswami

Former aircraft engineer IAF, Retired Branch Manager SBI, Psychologist, Best Selling Author & Defence Recruitment Trainer https://academy.krgoswami.com