Sleep deprivation is becoming one of the most common causes of concern in the world of health and nutrition. According to the findings of a latest study, older adults who have been facing problem with their sleep cycle and quality of sleep may be at an increased risk of Alzheimer's. Researchers also pointed that good sleep habits were very crucial to support brain health.
The study was conducted by researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. They examined a group of mice and people and found that sleep deprivation increases levels of the key Alzheimer's protein, tau.
In follow-up studies on mice, the findings suggested that sleeplessness accelerates the spread of toxic clumps of tau, which may result in impaired brain activity and an increased risk of dementia. Tau can be found in healthy and regular brain too, but in certain conditions it may clump together and injure nearby tissue and presage cognitive decline.
"The interesting thing about this study is that it suggests that real-life factors such as sleep might affect how fast the disease spreads through the brain," said the researchers, including David Holtzman, MD from the varsity. This study shows that sleep disruption causes the damaging protein tau to increase rapidly and to spread over time, Holtzman added.
To find out whether lack of sleep was directly forcing tau levels upward, the team measured tau levels in mice and people with normal and disrupted sleep. The study published in the journal Science, suggested that tau levels in the fluid surrounding brain cells were about twice as high at night, when the animals were more awake and active, than during the day, when the mice dozed more frequently. Similarly, disturbing the mice's rest during the day caused daytime tau levels to double.
The study indicated that a sleepless night cause tau levels to rise by about 50 percent. The study also said that staying up all night enables people sleep more later and increased instances of stress and temperamental issues. The mice too, rebounded from a sleepless day by sleeping a lot more later when they got a chance.
The researchers said that staying awake for a prolonged spell may lead the tau levels to rise. Tau is raised routinely through the hours you are awake and engaged in daily business
of thinking and doing, but it should decrease while you are winding down and preparing to sleep.
Ayurvedic Remedy To Sleep Better
Ayurveda suggests drinking a hot glass of milk to induce sleep. According to some recent studies, milk contains tryptophan, which helps production of serotonin. Serotonin helps calm your brain, which helps you sleep better.
'The Complete book of Ayurvedic Home Remedies,' by Dr. Vasant Lad gives an excellent home remedy that could help you catch your much needed sleep. Add a pinch of nutmeg, a pinch of cardamom and some crushed almonds would not only improve the taste of the milk, but also help promote good sleep. You can also mix one cup milk with 1/4th cup water and 1 clove of fresh, chopped garlic. Bring it to boil and consume it warm.
(With inputs IANS)