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A study found that people who stay up late are more likely to suffer from health problems than those who sleep and get up early.
Researchers from Northwestern University and the University of Surrey /ˈsɜr i, ˈsʌr I / examined the link between one’s preference for mornings or evenings and risk of health problems. They observed over 430,000 participants aged 38 to 73 over the course of 6 and a half years. Among the participants, 9% considered themselves to be “extreme evening types,” while 27% described themselves as “extreme morning types.”
Based on the study findings, the “extreme evening types” were more prone to health conditions like diabetes, respiratory problems, heart diseases, and other health problems than the “extreme morning types.” Because of this, the former were 10% more likely to experience premature death than the latter.
The researchers suspected that inflexible working hours that usually last late in the evening account for the health problems. As this type of work schedule entails starting work early and ending it late, people in this set-up usually experience sleep deprivation, which can lead to unhealthy lifestyle practices.
Malcolm von Schantz, one of the researchers from the University of Surrey, found the findings alarming and called attention to this health issue.
Hence, the researchers are calling on employers to implement a flexible schedule and allow their employees, especially the “extreme evening types,” to sleep in and have more time to finish their tasks. In addition, Schantz encouraged other researchers to conduct studies about how “extreme evening types” can synchronize their biological clock with daytime.