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A regular sleep schedule is important

April 21, 2018 GMT

Admittedly, I am an early riser. My dad taught me at a very young age, “The early bird gets the worm.” I have always believed that and stayed true to it.

Three of the many books I have written were done between 0300 and 0600 hours. That is when I am productive, feel great, and have a great day following.

There are occasions, particularly on the weekends (when the gym does not open until later) when I get up hours past my normal wake time. Those days I sleep in I feel worn out, fatigued, and not quite as sharp as I like to be.

A recent study released by the Sleep and Health Research Program took data from the Sleep and Healthy Activity, Diet, Environment, and Socialization (SHADES) study, which analyzed the responses of 984 adults, between 22 and 60 years old.

This study showed that people who purposefully go to bed late and wake up later on the weekends have more fatigue, more mood issues, and poorer health than those who keep a regular sleep schedule.

The study showed that every hour of extra sleep (or sleeping in) on the weekends was associated with an 11 percent increase in the possibility of heart disease. These effects were independent of sleep duration. While we all are very aware of the importance of sleep, this goes to show that when we sleep is just as important.

A regular sleep schedule, even on the weekends, is of great importance for overall health and well-being. So, though I hate to say it, keep your regular sleep-wake cycle every day of the week. It’s important, not only to your longevity, but to your quality of life.

Dr. Warren Willey is a Pocatello physician. Visit his website at http://drwilley.com.