Go Ahead and Sleep In This Weekend

Simon Moss
May 29, 2018

Don't feel guilty about sleeping in late on weekends. Weekend snoozers, the data showed, live just as long as those who slept enough during the week. It can give you heart problems or hurt your waistline, and it can leave you anxious and depressed.

Scientists in the Journal of Sleep Research conducted a study on the sleep patterns of adults.

"The duration of sleep is important for longevity", said Thorbjorn Akersted of the Stress Research Institute in Sweden, quoted by The Guardian.

The findings are based on almost 44,000 people in Sweden over a 13-year period. A new study suggests that sleeping in on your days off can offset a lack of sleep during the work week.

Curiously, after the age of 65, there is no relationship between sleep duration and mortality. "If you can function on what you get, you are likely getting the right amount of sleep".

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Their findings stated that those under the age of 65 who had five hours sleep or less at the weekends had a 52 per cent higher mortality rate than those who had six or seven hours sleep.

When, instead, different combinations of weekday and weekend sleep durations were analysed, we observed a detrimental association with consistently sleeping ≤5 hr (hazard ratios 1.65; 95% confidence intervals 1.22-2.23) or ≥8 hr (hazard ratios 1.25; 95% confidence intervals 1.05-1.50), compared with consistently sleeping 6-7 hr per day (reference).

The study found that people who sleep five hours or less per night including the weekends had higher mortality rates.

Previous sleep studies asked people to count their hours of sleep for an average night, without distinguishing between workdays and days off. The take home point is that possibly, long weekend sleep may compensate for short weekday sleep.

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