In "Sleepless In America", the latest documentary from National Geographic exploring the significant health issues that arise from getting too little sleep, Dr. David Gorzal reveals for the first time in a laboratory setting how cancer can grow twice as fast in animals with chronic, disrupted sleep.
Translating these findings to humans, he asserts that we need to respect sleep and value it as a part of our culture in order to prevent illness. Director and producer of the documentary John Hoffman joined HuffPost Live host Nancy Redd to discuss society's beliefs about sleep and what science has to say about them.
"We grow up knowing about the restorative powers of sleep," Hoffman said. "'Just sleep on it, you'll feel better.' These are not coincidences that we say these things. What are the two most feared illnesses in America? Cancer and Alzheimer's. We now have evidence that inadequate sleep is a risk factor for both ... And if we can prioritize sleep, we might stave off some of those very, very dangerous diseases."
To hear more about "Sleepless in America" and how rest can help prevent serious illnesses like cancer and Alzheimer's disease, watch the full HuffPost Live clip in the video above.