Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Get Your Sleep

                                                      

                                                        From The Ramparts
                                                     Junious Ricardo Stanton                          
                                                           Get Your Sleep


            "The price of insufficient sleep may be poor health. Study after study has revealed that people who sleep poorly are at greater risk for a number of diseases and health problems. And now the search is on to discover why this might be." http://healthysleep.med.harvard.edu/healthy/matters/consequences


            Several years ago I interviewed activist Dick Gregory on my Internet radio program (The Digital Underground www.Harambeeradio.com.) and he told me most Americans suffer needlessly from three conditions that over time will cause major health problems that could easily be avoided. He said we do great harm to ourselves due to dehydration, insufficient sleep/rest and malnutrition. Study after study has shown we need to drink plenty of clean fresh water, eat a balanced and nutritious diet and get plenty of rest.
            I recently saw an article Online that stated sleep deprivation is a major problem in the US, so much so that it costs millions of dollars in lost time, wages, production and health.  I though about what Dick Gregory told me many years ago. It is important we get plenty of sleep and rest. Sleep is the body's way of rejuvenating itself, restoring your body's unique homeostasis, maintaining mental alertness, quality brain functioning, strengthening our immune system, providing psychological balance and wellbeing. During sound restful sleep the body repairs itself. This essential repair and maintenance provides the strength and peak energy for us to effectively navigate our daily lives and routines, successfully cope with stressing situations, meet and overcome the challenges we encounter every day.
             Failure to get good and regular sleep will negatively impact you in numerous ways. Sleep deprivation can cause or lead to serious illness and lower life expectancy. Research has documented that lack of quality sleep can contribute to:  heart failureheart diseaseobesity, diabetes, high blood pressurestroke or transient ischemic attack (mini-stroke), depression, and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In African-American families and communities, we have a higher percentage of these diseases and conditions most of which are related to our "lifestyle" or more correctly deathstyle.  Demographically we suffer disproportionally from all the disorders that often result from sleep deprivation, obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, depression and emotional instability. Reports show adequate sleep slows or eliminates inflammation because lack of sleep throws off our normal hormonal balance and can cause early aging and conditions associated with aging such as inflamed joints and lowered immune system. When we add poor diet and dehydration we are setting ourselves up for poor health and increased health risks! The good news is we can eradicate much of our suffering and dis-ease.
            Not only is sleep deprivation a personal issue, it is a major societal problem as well.  Lack of sleep is having a devastating impact on our collective health but also on the nation's economy.  "The U.S. loses just over 1.2 million working days a year due to sleep deprivation among its working population. Productivity losses at work occur through a combination of presenteeism, where employees are at work but working at a sub-optimal level and absenteeism – employees not being at work. The study is the first of its kind to quantify the economic losses suffered because of the lack of sleep among workers." http://www.orrazz.com/2016/12/us-economy-loses-up-to-411-billion-per.html
            Sleep deprivation is responsible for serious mishaps, accidents and disasters, "Investigations of the grounding of the Exxon Valdez oil tanker, as well as the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger, have concluded that sleep deprivation also played a critical role in these accidents. In both cases, those in charge of the operations and required to make critical decisions were operating under extreme sleep deprivation. While the Challenger disaster put the multi-billion dollar shuttle program in peril, the Exxon Valdez oil spill resulted in incalculable ecological, environmental, and economic damage." http://healthysleep.med.harvard.edu/healthy/matters/consequences/sleep-performance-and-public-safety
            On a spiritual level sleep is essential. It is the conduit to the universal consciousness, our  higher self that is always attempting to communicate with us, assist and support us. In a awakened state often our egos and stream of conscious thoughts get in the way of the messages from our deep psyche and spirit. When we are asleep or in the alpha level of brain activity, we are far more receptive to the messages, images, promptings and creativity from the spirit realm. Denying ourselves sleep cuts us off from a valuable reservoir of wisdom and creativity and an opportunity to access UNIVERSAL CONSCIOUSNESS. We need to actualize this portal to the Higher Self, sleep is a great way to do it. 
            So the take away from all this is, get plenty of sleep. Studies show humans need between 7-9 hours of sleep a night. https://sleepfoundation.org/media-center/press-release/national-sleep-foundation-recommends-new-sleep-times. If we get our sleep drink plenty of clean water and eat healthy meals our overall health, productivity and life expectancy will improve. Try it for a few months, if you don't like it; you can always go back to your unhealthy habits.

                                                            -30-


                                               


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