In the past three weeks I've heard/read from two or three different sources that sleep deprivation is killer. That sleeping only four, five, six hours a night every night is making us cranky, emotionally ill-equipped to handle bad things that happen, fat, diabetic and we don't want to get it on as much. That humans are the only animals that purposely deprive themselves of the proper amount of sleep and that our bodies do not seem to have a way to compensate for lack of sleep. If you're sleep deprived, you're sleep deprived and your body will not learn to adapt.
Yikes! I'm one of those people! I'm always scooting along on about five to six hours of sleep. Sometimes I get seven but that's a lot for me. Here I was all these years thinking that my butt is big because I eat popcorn at midnight. And it is for that reason but the reason I'm eating it is because I'm really sleep deprived. The little hormone that tells your body that you're not hungry? You don't make that hormone when you're sleep deprived hence, popcorn at midnight!
We've somehow fooled ourselves into thinking that sleeping eight to ten hours a night (and the stories I read/heard said that the minimum we should be sleeping is eight hours a night, every night) is a sign of laziness. That's we're not getting the most out of life when we sleep that much and it's a sort of badge of honor to drag through each day after only getting five hours of sleep. What we don't realize though is that we're not doing our best and getting the most out of life and the added stress it's putting on our bodies is aging us faster and making us fatter.
This has explained so much about things in my life that I'm unhappy with. It won't fix everything but I imagine it'll remove some roadblocks that I've let trip me up. I know on those days after I've had a really long sleep I feel so much better and I wonder why I keep staying up too late at night and robbing myself of what I really need.