Late to Rise? You Might Be Early to Die

Late to Rise? You Might Be Early to Die

Late to Rise? You Might Be Early to Die

Researchers tracked nearly half a million adults in the United Kingdom over six and a half years, and found that the people who identified as "definite evening types" at the start of the study had a 10% higher chance of all-cause mortality compared with those who said they were "definite morning types", the BBC reports. Those who identified themselves as evening people were 10 percent more likely to die during that period, the study found, even when accounting for sex, age, body mass index, how long they usually sleep and how much they smoke.

The study tracked 433,268 subjects for six-and-a-half years.

The duo analysed information and found that those in the night owl group had a 10 percent higher risk of dying compared to those in the early-morning group.

Moreover, evening people were at a higher risk for conditions like diabetes, psychological and neurological disorders - plus certain types of respiratory and gastrointestinal/abdominal issues.

The higher risk may be because "people who are up late have an internal biological clock that doesn't match their external environment", Knutson said.

Young people tend to naturally be night owls, something that can shift throughout life.

The researchers also called for more studies on whether night owls can adjust their circadian rhythms so that they become morning people, and whether such an adjustment would lower those individuals' risk of health problems.

The study authors had earlier concluded that genetics and environment play approximately equal roles in whether we are a morning or a night type, or somewhere in between.

The study was published Thursday, April 12 in the Chronobiology International journal. She also believes that if night people try to adopt regular (earlier) bedtimes and become regimented about adopting healthy lifestyle behaviors, health benefits can be realized. I think they would have had stronger results if, instead of just looking at chronotype, they had looked at chronotype alignment: "So, are people going to bed at their correct time?" However, this is the first study to connect evening types to mortality. "We should discuss allowing evening types to start and finish work later, where practical", von Schantz added. According to a 2017 study, women who were more exposed to artificial light, perhaps due to living in the city or working night shifts, were 14 percent more at risk of developing breast cancer.

Possible causes of the mortality risk increase include psychological stress, lack of exercise, eating at the wrong time of the day, not enough sleep, or perhaps alcohol and drug use.

Even more, passing towards the daylight saving time coincides with a higher incidence of heart attacks and for the late risers is more hard to adapt to the change, say the researchers.

"Whether or not you're a night owl is partly determined by your genes, which obviously you can't change, but it's not entirely a given", Knutson said. 35 percent as "more a morning person than an evening person", 28 percent as "more an evening than morning person" and 9 percent as "definitely an evening person".

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