Morning People May Live Longer Than Night Owls

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The scientists adjusted for the expected health problems in owls and still found the 10 percent higher risk of death.

"It is a public health problem that cannot be ignored", said Malcolm von Schantz, a professor of chronobiology at Surrey University.

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

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. Make work shifts match peoples' chronotypes.

She said they should try to be disciplined about bed-times and get jobs done early in the day rather than leaving them until late, she said. Earlier studies have already found higher rates of metabolic problems and cardiovascular diseases in people who are active at night.

Genes and environment play an equal role in our body clocks.

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"You're not doomed", added Dr Knutson."Part of it you don't have any control over and part of it you might".

Most researchers agree that a large part of what defines your chronotype is genetic - both whether you are more of a morning person or night person and how much you have the ability to shift that "preference". Advice to improve sleep patterns includes avoiding bright light in the evenings, keeping a regular bedtime and having dinner earlier. Be regimented about adopting healthy lifestyle behaviors and recognize the timing of when you sleep matters. "So they want to be up late but they have to be up early for work and so the time that they're doing things, like waking up or eating, is not at the correct time for them". "They shouldn't be forced up for an 8am shift". "If you looked in Spain, where people are much later in terms of when they go to work, my guess is that the health consequences are probably less than in the United Kingdom".

Night owls were more likely to suffer from psychological disorders, diabetes and stomach and breathing troubles. "Then we'll see if we get improvements in blood pressure and overall health‚" she said.

The switch to daylight savings or summer time is already known to be much more hard for evening types than for morning types. "And we have to remember that even a small additional risk is multiplied by more than 1.3 billion people who experience this shift every year".

"Understanding the link between chronotype and mortality could lead to the development of additional behavioural strategies to mitigate risk associated with being an evening type". In order to evaluate natural circadian rhythm, otherwise known as their chronotype, participants were asked to identify as "definitely a morning person", "more a morning person than evening person", "more an evening than a morning person" or "definitely an evening person".

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