Sleep Prevents The Common Cold

You know that awful season that we all dread, the infamous cold and flu season?! It’s right around the corner and what’s recommended to fight off that icky virus that’s lurking? Sleep! According to an article on the Washington Post, “People who sleep six hours a night or less are four times more likely to catch a cold than those who snooze for more than seven hours.”

There are a lot of people who claim that they only need a few hours of sleep a night and are can function perfectly fine, but the long term effects of that aren’t pretty according to researchers. A lack of sleep leads to chronic illness and possibly premature death. Not a great thing to hear when one if five Americans gets less than six hours of sleep on the average work night, the least amount of sleep among six countries surveyed in 2013 by the National Sleep Foundation.

Aric Prather, assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of California San Francisco did a study with 164 volunteers and measured their normal sleep habits for 7 nights. Then stuck them in a hotel and gave them a cold virus in nose drops for a week. The results showed those who slept less than six hours a night the week before were 4.2 times more likely to catch the cold compared with those who got more than seven hours of sleep. “Insufficient sleep disrupts the immune system and makes it less able to fight of a virus,” Prather said.

How much sleep do you currently get? If you get less that six hours will you up your sleep hours as we head into cold and flu season?

Read the full article on the Washington Post HERE

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