Don’t lose sleep over ‘staying awake’. Meditate

Bhubaneswar: A study on the impact of Heartfulness Meditation on insomnia brings cheer to chronic insomniacs as they stay awake to greet ‘World Sleep Day’ on March 16, 2018.

Daaji(Kamlesh Patel), the fourth global guide of Heartfulness, says,“Sleep is very essential to help maintain mood, memory, and cognitive performance. Daytime alertness and memory are impaired by loss of sleep, especially when it is sustained over a few nights.For many, meditation has become a mainstream practice over the years and the study on its impact on alleviating sleep-related diseases is very encouraging.”

Indians and sleep*

·       93 per cent of Indians suffer from sleep deprivation; getting less than 8 hours per night

·       58 per cent believe their work suffers due to lack of adequate sleep

·       11 per cent have fallen asleep at work due to a poor night’s sleep 

·       38 per cent witnessed a colleague falling asleep at work

·       Lack of sleep also affects family relationships according to 19 per cent

·       87 per cent of Indians say lack of sleep affects health

·       72 per cent of Indians are waking up 1 to 3 times per night

·       5 per cent wake up over stress at work

·       33 per cent Indians snore; up to 14 per cent snore as loud as or louder than they speak

·       Only 2 per cent of Indians discuss their lack of sleep with a physician

Source: Philips Studyconducted by Nielsen***


An ongoing research study at the WellSpan York Hospital, USA, to assess the impact of Heartfulness Meditation( on insomnia, has shown promising results. Twenty-eight participants diagnosed with chronic insomnia completed an eight-week study involving the practice of Heartfulness Meditation as an intervention to help with insomnia. The pre- and post-Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) scores were measured. The mean ISI scores reduced from 20.6 to 10.8, almost by half and the result was statistically significant (p<0.001). Interestingly, some of the patients have been able to come off their pharmacological treatments as a result of the practice.

A growing body of medical evidence links inadequate sleep with anger, anxiety, and sadness. A significant proportion of the adult population suffers from sleep problems, and many of them potentially having chronic insomnia. Treatment options include both pharmacological and non-pharmacological measures. Pharmacological treatments may be associated with significant adverse effects.

Dr. Raja Amarnath, a senior consultant at Apollo Hospitals, Chennai,says, “In different studies approximately 25% of adults mentioned that their sleep was not satisfactory. At least 10-15% have symptoms of sleep deprivation, negatively affecting their daytime work, while 6-10% meet the diagnostic criteria for insomnia. While the situation is quite alarming there is hope beyond medication. The results of the study on the effect of Heartfulness Meditation points towards the alleviating effect of meditation on sleep and sleep-related disorders.”

Chronic shortening of sleep time results in circadian rhythm disorders. Sleep problems are also prevalent among children and teenagers due to the availability of computer games, Internet and television. Studies show that this has resulted in obesity, cognitive impairment and emotional disturbances. In adults, sleep disturbances lead to a wide range of health problems such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, anxiety, depression, early aging, alcoholism and other substance abuse. Chronic sleep restriction among many individuals may eventually impact society in terms of loss in productivity and increased health costs.