Why Over Sleeping Isn’t Good For Your Health

Is grabbing a couple extra hours of shuteye putting your heart at risk?

Christa Sgobba |

When the weekend rolls around, you’re probably looking forward to some extra hours under the covers, sleeping. But while shutting off your alarm may feel amazing, you might want to drag yourself out of bed at your normal wakeup time, according to preliminary research presented at SLEEP, the annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies suggests. Social jet lag—sleeping in later on the weekends than weekends—may be harmful to your health, researchers from the University of Arizona say.

Related: Can’t Sleep? What You Should Not Be Doing That Sabotages Your Shuteye

After surveying more than 1,000 adults on their sleep habits, wellbeing, and health history, the researchers discovered that for every additional hour people reported sleeping on weekends compared to weekdays, their risk of heart disease increased by 11 percent. The results held true even after researchers adjusted for sleep length and insomnia symptoms, both of which have been separately linked to heart issues.

Every hour spent sleeping was also linked to increases on ratings of sleepiness and fatigue, too. Those who slept in were also more likely to describe their health as “fair or poor” rather than “excellent.”

Related: Hack Your Bedtime: Your Phone Can Help You Sleep Better

Social jet lag messes with your circadian rhythm, which, in some way or another, plays a part in fat accumulation, insulin secretion, and food absorption, a separate 2015 study found. That raises your risk of metabolic abnormalities, which can put you at risk of heart issues later on.

Sleeping in on weekends also sets you up to feel groggy and more fatigued when Monday comes, too, says Dr Brandy Roane, of Brown University’s Sleep for Science Research Laboratory. That’s because getting up later pushes your body clock back, making it harder for you to fall asleep at a normal time.

Related: Feel Great After a Bad Night of Sleep

So try to keep your weekend wakeup time no more than an hour later than your weekday time, says Roane. That amount of time is unlikely to affect your body clock.

Originally published on menshealth.com

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