According to a new study, catching up at the end of the week could lead to weight gain.
The research, published Thursday in Current Biology, revealed that people deprived of sleep during the week – sleeping less than 5 hours a night – but trying to make up for that on the weekends do not really see a lot of benefits.
"Our findings suggest that the usual behavior of burning the candle during the week and attempting to compensate for it at the weekend is not an effective health strategy," said lead author Kenneth Wright, a professor. of Integrative Physiology and Director of Sleep and Chronobiology magazine. Laboratory at the University of Colorado (CU).
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Wright and his colleagues monitored the diet, light exposure and sleep of 36 healthy adults aged 18 to 39 at the Center for Clinical Translational Research at UC University's Anschutz Medical Campus.
The participants were divided into three groups.
One group slept nine hours each night for nine nights and the second group slept five hours each night for five nights. The third group slept five hours for five hours, as many hours as he wanted for two nights and five hours the next two nights.
All those who slept less clung more at night, gained weight, and decreased their insulin sensitivity, although those who were able to recover at weekends saw slight improvements that disappeared when they returned. sleep less.
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The researchers also found worse results for those who slept on weekends, especially with regard to their sensitivity to insulin.
For those who slept five hours every nine nights, their sensitivity to insulin had decreased by 13%. For participants who were able to recover over the weekend, their sensitivity to insulin decreased from 9% to 27% and their muscle and liver sensitivity was lower than that of other groups.
"It may be that yo-yoing comes and goes, changing the time we eat, changing our circadian clock and then getting back to sleep is particularly disturbing," said Wright.
Wright and his colleagues also found that people can not really recover from lost sleep anyway.
The study found that participants allowed to sleep as much as they wanted only had an additional 66 minutes. The men were able to recover more sleep than the women, who had only one more minute. The men were able to accumulate two more hours during the weekend.
Instead of trying to catch up, Wright recommends sleeping at least seven hours a night.