Here’s exactly how little sleep you can get without f*cking your day up
Those longs nights of binge-watching How To Get Away With Murder that turn into early mornings might be doing way more harm to your body than you think.
According to Lois Krahn, M.D., a sleep medicine specialist at the Mayo Clinic, “The real goal is seven and a half to eight hours [a night]. If you’re getting less than six hours a night, you’re really in trouble.”
Yikes, six hours a night? Most college students aren’t even approaching that.
Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania did a experiment that cut down people’s sleep to six hours a night for two weeks straight. Then, they ran tests to see how their scores compared to the results they got with eight hours of sleep. The study showed that the reaction times, focus, and memory were vastly different when comparing 6 hours to 8 hours.
But surprisingly after 14 days of getting six hours of sleep, the subjects didn’t even feel sleep deprived! They didn’t even know that they were functioning like they’d gotten no sleep at all the night before.
When you sleep for less than six hours, you put your body at risk for depression, diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and stroke immediately. You also gain weight because when people are exhausted, they tend to look for fatty and sugary foods to energize them. Your body’s immune system crashes, and research shows people are three times more likely to catch a cold with less than seven hours of sleep compared to eight.
“The ‘short’ sleepers should be aware of the risks of developing metabolic syndrome, which could lead them to suffer from life threatening and chronic diseases,” lead author Dr. Jang Young Kim of Yonsei University in South Korea said by email to Huffington Post.
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Kim’s team of researchers looked at 2,600 adults for more than two years. Their research concluded that people who didn’t get at least six hours of sleep a night were 41 percent more likely to get metabolic syndrome than people who slept for at least six to eight.
Also, try not to drive when you are tired. Your driving becomes impaired when you don’t sleep enough according to a study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. It showed tired drivers double their risk of crashing.
Moral of the story is: If you sleep less than seven hours, honey you got a storm coming your way.