A new study that was published in Current Biology noted that extra sleeping on weekends won’t make up for the sleep deprivation throughout the week.
The researchers took two groups of people for the study. Both the groups were allowed to sleep not more than five hours every night. One group’s sleep was restricted all throughout the study, while the other group was allowed to catch up on their sleep during the weekend.
Both groups gained weight, snacked at night, showed signs of worsening of metabolic health. The lead author of the study Chris Depner said that they did not observe any benefits in the metabolic results of the people who slept more in the weekends.
Earlier research has suggested that too little amount of sleep can raise the risk of health issues like type-2 diabetes and obesity as it encourages people to snack at night and reduces the ability of the body to regulate blood sugar. In this recent study, the researchers wanted to see what happens when people are sleep-deprived on weekdays and get two days on weekends to catch up on sleep.
As part of the study, one group was allowed to sleep only five hours a night for nine nights. The second group was allowed to sleep only for five hours for five days and was allowed to catch up on their sleep on weekends. The third group was allowed to sleep plenty. Both the groups whose sleep was restricted gained little weight and became less insulin-sensitive. The people in second group saw improvements in health over weekends but it disappeared when they went back to work week. The insulin sensitivity of the first group reduced by 13%, while it deteriorated by 9%- 27% in the second group. One of the major problems that the researchers noted was that when people were given the chance to sleep, they could not.