Night Owls are at Higher Risk of Earlier Death

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Over the course of the study, just over 10,000 participants died, and researchers found that those who identified as "definite evening types" were 10 percent more likely to die than their sunrise-loving counterparts.

At the beginning of the study period, participants were asked whether they considered themselves to be morning people or evening people, or whether they felt they fell somewhere in between those two groups.

The researchers also called for more studies on whether night owls can adjust their circadian rhythms so that they become morning people, and whether such an adjustment would lower those individuals' risk of health problems.

Along with the 10% increased risk of death compared to definite morning types, the more people identified as evening people, the greater their risk for a variety of medical conditions.

She said: "Owls trying to live in a lark world may have health consequences". We need to determine what interventions work best at improving the health and well-being of night owls. A 2017 study claims those tendencies could be linked to your genes.

Although the study did not look at the specific causes of death, research has suggested that night owls are more likely to develop cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer such as prostate and breast cancer.

Genetics and a person's environment play a largely equal role in whether someone is a lark or an owl, but owls can become morning people by exposing themselves to light early on in the day.

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Results were published Thursday in the journal Chronobiology International.

'We should discuss allowing evening types to start and finish work later, where practical.

As for why night owls seem to naturally stay up later, it's hard to pin down any one reason. Zeitzer, who was not involved in this study, said that "the findings for the mortality actually weren't as robust as I would have hoped". "It could be that people, who are up late, have an internal biological clock that doesn't match their external environment", Knutson said.

Even more, passing towards the daylight saving time coincides with a higher incidence of heart attacks and for the late risers is more hard to adapt to the change, say the researchers.

Around 50,000 died young over the study period due to the stress of being forced up early.

"If you can recognise these (types) are, in part, genetically determined and not just a character flaw, jobs and work hours could have more flexibility for owls", Knutson said.

But the study should still be a wake-up call for night owls, who may want to take extra efforts to maintain a healthy lifestyle, she said.

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