REST

Rest does not mean sleeping in an idle way. Every living thing must have a certain amount of work and a certain amount of leisure. Before electricity was invented, people rested at night - now we work day and night. Our over-stimulated bodies need real breaks every now and then to recharge. 

A healthy body produces special “sleep hormones” that induce sleep in order to repair, rejuvenate and detoxify. These hormones - tryptophan, seratonin and melatonin - calm the nerves, boost immunity, deepen sleep and promote longevity.                                                   A shortage of these sleep hormones leads to irregular sleep patterns, restless sleep, weakened immunity and cravings.  During sleep, your body takes care of a number of critical tasks. It’s much more than simply resting. This is a time for rejuvenation, rebuilding and reprogramming.

Your brain stays active during sleep and your body goes through several different cycles throughout the night. During these different stages, your body focuses on tasks such as neutralizing and processing toxins, replenishing energy to your different organ systems, processing memories and assimilating information.                          

Sleep is food for the brain: Get enough of it, and get it when you need it.  


WHY WE NEED TO RECHARGE

We know that at nighttime, the body makes any necessary repairs that it needs from the day’s activities. Toxins are eliminated, tissues and cells are rebuilt. The mind processes stress that has accumulated during the waking hours, reducing its adverse effect on the system.
 
But even with extensive research in the laboratory, many of the functions of sleep remain a mystery.  One thing is certain, though – without it, the body and mind cannot operate properly.  
 
If sleep is missed or of poor quality for long periods of time both our physical and mental health will suffer. Sleep deprivation takes its toll on your productivity, your enjoyment of life and your looks.
 
Fortunately, there are many effective ways to stave off temporary bouts of insomnia and ensure continual deep sleep, night after night, allowing you to work and play at optimum energy levels. 


THE NATURAL RHYTHM

If we work for 12 hours and rest for 12 hours, our bodies become energized. Most people think of the outer physical body only when referring to rest. That is the hands, legs, nerves, joints and bones are rested and refreshed.

However, the internal organs which work constantly need rest the most. These are the organs that deal with digestion and excretory process like the intestines, liver, and pancreas. If we don’t give these organs adequate rest at night, they cannot digest our food effectively. They cannot battle against microorganisms. Nor can they remove toxins from our bodies effectively. The results are is illness and discomfort of some sort.

Imagine how unproductive you feel when you have missed one whole night of sleep. Can you work properly for one day if you've missed sleep the previous night? This also applies to those parts of your body like the liver!

Rest does not include stuffing our stomach until midnight and then sleeping happily either. This only provides more work for the digestive and excretory systems. Total rest requires recharging the internal organs, to then successfully discharge waste material.

At midnight, the bodily systems have completed digestion and begin the cleansing process (fasting). For this reason, it is highly important to eat your evening meal between 7-8 p.m.

If you look around and observe nature, most animals, birds and even sea-creatures, are in sync with nature; rising at dawn and resting at dusk. This is the natural rhythm. It is advisable to rise between 4:30-5-30 a.m as this is the time that is favorable in many respects. For this to happen, one should have slept the previous night between 10:30-11:30 pm.

This function of rest helps us fulfill the function of fasting/detoxification. The entire body requires self-rejuvenation that only you can provide with a conscious choice and gradual habit-forming. No medicine or magic pill can fix that which can only be fixed by returning to a simple, natural body rhythm.

Just a simple switch to this natural rhythm will begin to give you noticeable changes in energy and vitality. It is really how we are supposed to be.

It is high time we realize that medicine cannot rejuvenate us; only natural living can.

If we don’t open our eyes, and change our thoughts and habits, we will be at the last stage of our lives at an early age.

HOW SLEEP IS REGULATED BY THE BRAIN

Sleep is regulated by two brain processes. One is the restorative process when sleep occurs naturally in response to how long we are awake; the longer we are awake, the stronger is the drive to sleep.  
 
The second process controls the timing of sleep and wakefulness during the day- night cycle. Timing is regulated by the circadian biological clock that is located in our brain.  
 
This part of the brain, the SCN or suprachiasmatic nucleus, is influenced by light so that we naturally tend to get sleepy at night when it is dark and are active during the day when it is light. 
 
 In addition to timing the sleep-wake cycle, the circadian clock regulates day- night cycles of most body functions, ensuring that the appropriate levels occur at night when you are sleeping.  
 
For example, important hormones are secreted, blood pressure is lowered and kidney functions change. Research even indicates that memory is consolidated during sleep.  
 
This “clock” in the brain runs on a 24-hour cycle with the result that we feel most sleepy around 2:00-4:00 am and in the afternoon between 1:00-3:00 pm.  
 
We need to have continuous sleep that ...contd...

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