Love a good sleep in? New evidence shows this could help you live longer
We’ve all felt guilty for choosing to sleep in for those extra few hours on the weekend, especially if you know you’ve got somewhere to be or you’re avoiding household chores.
But, how would you feel knowing that extra sleep could be having a positive effect on your health?
A new study has discovered that weekend slumber may lead to longer life expectancy, as it fills an ‘overlooked’ gap in sleep science.
Unlike previous research, this study focused specifically on mapping participants weekend sleeping habits as well as weekday patterns.
44,000 people were tracked over 13 years in the hope to map out how their weekend sleeping patterns compared to their weekly sleeping patterns.
This discovered that those who sleep in on weekends (even for an extra hour or two) live just as long as someone who’s slept well every night.
The authors of the research say that although it looks as though weekend compensation is good, it’s only a ‘tentative conclusion’.
What previous research has found
Other studies have proven that people under the age of 65 who’ve had 7 hours sleep a night will outlive those who sleep 5 hours or less a night.
Tips to getting a better nights sleep
Getting a full seven or more hours sleep can be difficult for some, particularly when their minds are occupied following a busy day at work or kids are interrupting your shut eye. Here are some tips to help get the most out of a nights sleep:
- Make a bedtime routine: Stick to a routine as much as you can, as going to bed at the same time every night can make it easier to fall asleep.
- Turn off all your screens before bed: Reducing the amount of time you spend looking at a screen will help your mind wind down. Exposing yourself to too much blue-light (the lighting our screens emit) interferes with the sleep inducing hormone Melatonin, so the less exposure the better.
- Exercise regularly: This helps reduce tension throughout the body and therefore get a better nights rest.
- Avoid eating too close to bed time: Eating too close to when you plan to sleep can make you too alert and unable to relax. Instead, try eating a few hours before you usually go to bed.
So, next time you go to have a sleep in, don’t think twice about it and do it for your health!
Are you a fan of sleeping in? Let us know.