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Night owls at increased risk for dark personality traits, illness and depression

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(NaturalNews) These days, when working excessively long hours or just staying out late with friends seems to be a kind of badge of honor, getting sufficient sleep seems to be a thing of the past. In fact, the world tends to be divided by early-morning people, also known as "larks," and those who live for the late-night scene, referred to as "night owls."

While larks may be described by their night-loving counterparts as overly cheery, one thing seems certain: Their physical and mental health is likely to be in better shape, at least according to a University of Western Sydney study. (1)

In the small study, 263 college students were asked a series of questions about their morning and evening habits, as well as ones that would provide insight about their personality traits and levels of narcissism. (1)

Night owls more prone to illness, depression

It was determined that many of the night owls exhibited personality traits that experts say are part of the "Dark Triad" personality which has been linked with being more insensitive, aggressive, unstable and frequent seeking of attention and special treatment. Such a person may exhibit the tendency to seek out multiple sex partners and go to extremes to get what they want, which may have negative mental and physical health consequences. (2)

Furthermore, according to Dr. Michael Breus, PhD, who is a Diplomate of the American Board of Sleep Medicine and a Fellow of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, so-called creatures of the night are more prone to becoming ill. "When you look at people who are night owls," he said, "we know that they are more prone to disease. Research shows they are more likely to be depressed and have immune dysfunction. They have a lower resistance to things like colds and get sick more often." (1)

Night owls tend to drink more alcohol, not sleep well when they do go to bed and are more tired throughout the day, behaviors that also have many experts suggesting that there's a correlation between such people and depression. (3) It's even thought that those with a preference for staying up until the wee hours of the morning may have structural changes to the brain

Many variables behind preference for early morning or late night activities

Dr. Breus explains that everyone is genetically disposed to a certain sleep-wake chronotype that makes them rise with the sun or prefer the absence of it. (1)

However, several factors come into play, such as in those who may have sleep disorders, job shifts or changing circadian rhythms (common as children become teenagers). (1, 4)


(1) http://abcnews.go.com

(2) http://www.psychologytoday.com

(3) http://www.newscientist.com

(4) http://sleepdisorders.dolyan.com


About the author:
A science enthusiast with a keen interest in health nutrition, Antonia has been intensely researching various dieting routines for several years now, weighing their highs and their lows, to bring readers the most interesting info and news in the field. While she is very excited about a high raw diet, she likes to keep a fair and balanced approach towards non-raw methods of food preparation as well. >>> Click here to see more by Antonia

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