Insufficient sleep dehydrates our body and upsets the hormonal balance

Insufficient sleep dehydrates our body and upsets the hormonal balance

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Those who sleep too little favor dehydration

Many adults only sleep six hours a night - according to numerous studies, that's not enough. The recommended length of sleep in adults should be between seven and eight hours a day. An American research team has now uncovered another good reason why one should adhere to these sleep guidelines. Apparently, lack of sleep affects hormones and promotes faster dehydration.

In a recent study, researchers from Penn State University in Pennsylvania found that too little sleep negatively affects our hormones that regulate the body's fluid balance. This is associated with an increased likelihood of dehydration. The study results were recently published in the specialist journal “Sleep”.

Slept badly? Then you should drink more water

If you feel uncomfortable after a short night, it could be the effects of dehydration. The researchers suggest that people who have not slept enough should drink more water after a night with too little sleep to counter symptoms of dehydration. "Your fluid balance can be affected from just six hours of sleep a night," warns study leader Asher Rosinger.

The body's sleep and water balance are related

The Penn State research team examined the fluid balance of subjects in relation to the length of their sleep. The team found that participants who slept only six hours had significantly more concentrated urine. In addition, the short sleep group was up to 59 percent more likely to be under-hydrated than adults who slept eight hours regularly.

How does the lack of sleep affect the water balance?

In further studies, the researchers found that a certain hormone called vasopressin is responsible for this effect. This hormone regulates the body's water balance. It is released both during the day and at night, but as the scientists have shown, the release process is accelerated in the late sleep cycles. "So if you wake up earlier, you could miss the window that releases more hormones, which disrupts your body's hydration," Rosinger said in a press release about the study results.

How do you recognize dehydration?

According to the researchers, dehydration can affect many of the body's systems and functions. Among other things, this can affect perception, mood and physical and mental performance. If such a condition is maintained over a longer period of time, there are serious health consequences such as urinary tract infections and kidney stones.

Other effects of lack of sleep

But sleep is not only important for the water balance. The brain detoxifies during sleep and sleep disorders reduce the process, because during sleep the interstices of the brain cells filled with brain water expand. These extensions are comparable to an expressway on which waste from the metabolism is transported out of the brain at twice the speed. This could also explain why healthy sleep is a protective function against dementia.

However, too much sleep can also be harmful

Too much or too little sleep harms our health. Another study showed that people who regularly sleep for ten hours or more are at increased risk of developing a metabolic syndrome. This is a dangerous combination of being overweight (especially abdominal fat accumulation), high blood pressure and increased blood sugar and flood fat levels. (vb)

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