A lack of sleep is fast becoming recognised as a key lifestyle factor determining whether or not we will develop Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s disease is associated with a build up of a toxic protein called beta-amyloid clumping together within certain areas of the brain.
A recent report by Rhys Blakely, Science Correspondent to The Times newspaper suggests that scientists can now identify that these damaging proteins are flushed out of our brains as we sleep.
Cerebrospinal fluid is thought to pulse through our brains during non-REM sleep shortly after we fall to sleep flushing the toxic memory impairing proteins from the brain.
It’s now clear that “getting too little sleep across the adult life span will significantly raise your risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.” says Matthew Walker in his book Why We Sleep.
Matthew notes that both Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan, two world leaders famously proud of sleeping only four to five hours a night, both went on to develop Alzheimer’s disease.
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