A new study suggests that catching up on sleep on the weekend can considerably prolong your life.
Researchers found that people aged 65 or younger that don’t get enough shuteye on the weekend can boost their risk of dying prematurely. For instance, sleeping less than 5 hours at night was linked to a 52% higher risk of dying prematurely than sleeping seven hours.
The study appeared this week in the Journal of Sleep Research.
Sleeping less than 5 hours on workdays also proved potentially fatal but catching up on lost sleep on the weekend seemed to offset the risk. The latest study involved 44,000 participants who were tracked for 13 years.
In people older than 65 years old, it didn’t matter the amount of sleep during the week and weekend when it comes to early mortality. However, study participants who tended to not remain consistent about their sleep patterns during the week and over the weekend either slept less than 5 hours or over eight hours at night.
The U.S. Not Getting Enough Sleep
It is best to sleep seven to eight hours per night, every night, but not everyone can stick to this habit. For example, U.S. president Donald Trump can only get 4-5 hours of shuteye per night, according to his personal doctor.
In the United States, one-third of the adult population sleeps less than seven hours per night. While men need 8 hours of sleep at night to be fully restored, women can remain healthy if they sleep 7.6 hours, according to a separate study that focused on more than 3,700 people for nearly one decade.
Researchers also found that each participant’s sleep needs were associated with genetic factors. Past studies have found that missing out on Zs can up the risk of breast cancer, bowel disease, and prostate.
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