Early birds sleep when the sun goes down and rise when the sun comes up. On the other hand, the night owl appears to be ‘out of sync’ with the earth’s biorhythms and if left to choose would sleep from around 2am until 10am each day.
The bad news for night owls is that they are living in an early bird world where school and work start between 7am and 8am. This could mean that they have to live in a chronically tired state as they do not get the eight hours of sleep they need. So whilst the early bird catches the worm, the late night owl appears to risk catching obesity, depression and cancer.
The good news is that a tightly-controlled sleeping schedule can assist those with the CRY1 gene mutation to live as early birds and avoid the negative health complications.
Here is what you can do if you want to live as an early bird:
• Set your alarm clock to go off every morning, including weekends, at the same time, such as 5am.
• Avoid snacking and bright lights (including screen time) after 7pm as this tricks the brain into thinking it is daytime. If you do need a night time snack, rather choose foods that help you sleep better.
• Avoid cheating- falling off the sleep wagon will happen more easily with this genetic mutation. You must guard your sleep routine fiercely. If you struggle to fall asleep, this article has some great tips: Eight ways to get to sleep faster.
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Written by Roxanne Atkinson