Advanced sleepers with early-rising body clocks more plentiful than previously thought

August 10, 2019

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There’s a body clock quirk that gets folks up bright and early without all the struggle to meet the day, and it turns out there’s more of you out there than previously thought.

Researchers at the University of California-San Francisco, the University of Utah and the University of Wisconsin calculated that about 1 in 300 adults can start the morning before 5:30 a.m. fully refreshed. This “advanced sleep” phase means the body’s circadian rhythm is hours ahead of most.

Researchers came up with the 1 in 300 number after evaluating nine years of data from nearly 2,500 patients at a sleep disorder clinic. Their findings have been published in the journal Sleep.

These “advanced sleepers” are ready to for the night’s shut-eye before 8:30 p.m., according Dr. Louis Ptacek, the study’s senior author. Ptacek is also a UCSF School of Medicine neurology professor.

It’s more than a Monday through Friday thing. They’re also early to bed early to rise on days whey they don’t have to work.

On weekends, their version of sleeping in could mean between five and 10 extra minutes of sleep instead of the half-hour to 40 minutes other family members without this sleep pattern might grab on off days.

Ptacek said the down side is that these early risers struggle to stay awake during evening events.

The group of advanced sleepers tracked by the researchers also claimed to have at least one immediate family member with the same sleep schedule, suggesting this may be a shared genetic trait.

Read more about the study here.

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