Research Says That Getting Long Sound Sleep on the Weekends Might Help You Live Longer

year ago

Sometimes it’s hard to come up with an excuse about wanting to stay in bed on the weekends, but this particular piece of research is probably going to give you a good enough reason. It appears that getting a long, sound sleep on the weekends might increase your chances of living longer. This “catch-up” sleep is perfect, especially for those who are too busy to sleep long hours during the weekdays.

Bright Side takes a peek into the research to understand more about the benefits of staying in bed over the weekend.

Sleeping in during weekend may be better.

It is often believed that sleeping for at least 8 hours every day is best. However, a study on sleeping duration discovers that this might not be the case after all. In fact, it is claimed that sleeping short hours during the weekdays and long hours during the weekend is better because you are likely to live longer than if you sleep for more than 8 hours a day.

The study takes a look at sleeping hours and their effect on the death rate.

The research followed 38,015 people for 13 years using a national death register and separated them into 2 groups: those below 65 years old and those age 65 and over. The “ideal” sleeping hours per day were considered to be in the 6-7 hour range. Factors like gender, body mass index, smoking, physical activity, and shift work were also taken into account.

It appears that if you are under the age of 65 and only sleep 5 hours or less, both during weekdays and weekends, you will have 65% higher death rate than those consistently sleeping 6-7 hours per night.

Sleeping long hours during the weekend can prolong your life.

If you belong to the same age group and enjoy long sleep only during the weekends, there is no risk of a higher death rate. It will be as if you consistently sleep 6-7 hours a day. This means that you can “cheat death” by sleeping in longer on Saturdays and Sundays.

The myth that sleeping at least 8 hours is essential has been debunked.

So is it just better to sleep longer? The answer is no, according to the same study. Sleeping for 8 or more hours every day increases the death rate by 25%, compared to sleeping for 6-7 hours a day. This discovery debunks the myth that it is healthy to get at least 8 hours of sleep every day.

All these findings, however, are not applicable to those aged 65 and over. The link between sleep duration and death rate seems to disappear for them. Torbjörn Åkerstedt, the first author of the study said that perhaps this is because older individuals already got the sleep they needed to get them to this point.

Does this revelation give you a better excuse to want to stay in during the weekends? Would you rather get the same hours of sleep every day or compensate your sleeping hours during the weekend?

Please note: This article was updated in May 2022 to correct source material and factual inaccuracies.


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