Number of hours of sleep and body weight

The number of hours you sleep is directly related to a person’s state of health. Lack of sleep is one of the risk factors for developing chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, and obesity. (2.3)

This article evaluates the number of hours to sleep according to age. And it is determined what the maximum and the minimum of hours that you have to sleep per day to maintain the physical and mental health of a person is.

Maximum and minimum hours to sleep per day.

Doctors recommend that an adult should sleep at least 6 hours a day¹. Only a few people can get fewer hours of sleep while maintaining normal body function and health.

On the other hand, excessive sleep can harm a person’s mental state.

Scientists have established the number of hours to sleep per day, not on gender (men or women), but only on age’s maximum and minimum limits.

For example, after age 65, they need less sleep, while newborns need much more. In the case of adolescents, they need about an hour more rest than adults¹. The maximum and minimum hours to sleep per day are detailed below:

  • Newborns: from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • Children from 1 to 5 years old: from 10 to 13 hours.
  • Children from 6 to 13 years old: from 9 to 11 hours.
  • Adolescents under 17 years: 8 to 10 hours.
  • People from 18 to 64 years old: from 7 to 9 hours.
  • People over 65: 7 to 8 hours.

How many hours should an athlete sleep?

In the case of athletes, they need a little more sleep, at least 8 hours a day. Otherwise, they not only worsen muscle recovery processes; but also reduce the levels of testosterone and other hormones.

For an athlete, not only the number of hours they sleep is of great importance, but the quality of sleep. Improving your sleeping posture is a method to enhance the rest process.

For example, sleeping on the left side can prevent digestive problems, particularly after taking supplements. This is because, in this position, it is more difficult for gastric juice to leave the stomach and enter the esophagus.

Number of hours of sleep and body weight

Studies have confirmed (2,3) a direct relationship between the number of hours of sleep and body weight. When the amount of sleep is limited to 8 to 5 hours per week, it has been shown that hormonal changes occur that affect the amount of food a person eats.

In particular, the optimal levels of two hormones related to hunger are modified: leptin and ghrelin.

Another study has found that in healthy men, a decrease in the number of hours of sleep in just five days caused a drop in testosterone by 10 to 30%. (3)

The level of the stress hormone cortisol also increased, which, in turn, led to an increase in feelings of ill-being and hunger. In simple words, respecting the number of hours to sleep is essential to regulating body weight.

Lack of sleep in adolescents

Studies indicate that the main symptoms of lack of sleep are: headaches, lack of concentration, and loss of ability to analyze and remember information. This is particularly important for physical growth in children and adolescents.

Respecting the phases of sleep is essential to improving memory functions and recording memories. If the rest is short, the percentage of stored information and the ability to remember new information is reduced.

As a result, lack of sleep interferes not only with one’s mental health but also disrupts a teenager’s ability to learn.

// Recommended: Why do teenagers sleep so much?

Number of hours to sleep and melatonin

Melatonin is one of the essential hormones that regulate phases of sleep and biorhythms of the body. It is this hormone that triggers the transition to the deep stage of dreams.

Melatonin is responsible for the functioning of the immune and hormonal system, and its synthesis directly affects the levels of cortisol, testosterone, serotonin, and dopamine.

That is why the number of hours a person sleeps per day affects their mood. The less melatonin there is in the body, the worse the sleep and the more the stress.

Taking melatonin in tablets allows the body’s biorhythms to normalize, which is essential for shift work, a sharp change in time zones, and mild cases of insomnia.

In addition, in biohacking, melatonin is taken in tablets to reduce falling asleep faster and make sleep hours deeper.

Sleep problems – causes

Experts believe that the leading cause of sleep disorders is a person’s daily habits – excessive consumption of coffee, tea, and other caffeinated beverages.

As well as, the use of electronic devices before bedtime (these) negatively affects the production of melatonin. To get more hours of sleep and reduce the time you fall asleep, it is recommended to limit caffeine and bright light devices at night.

In most cases, a person should sleep 6 hours and a maximum of 10 hours per day. Sleeping less or more can harm your health. The average number of hours for an adult is 7-8 hours. At the same time, to stimulate physical and muscular growth, athletes and adolescents need a longer time to sleep, a minimum of 8-9 hours a day.

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