Insufficient sleep dehydrates the body and disrupts hormonal balance

Those who sleep too little favor dehydration

Many adults sleep only six hours a night – this is too little, according to numerous studies. The recommended length of sleep for adults should be between seven and eight hours a day. An American research team has now discovered another good reason why they should follow these sleep guidelines. Apparently, sleep deprivation affects hormones and promotes faster dehydration.

Researchers at Penn State University in Pennsylvania have discovered in a recent study that too little sleep negatively affects our hormones that regulate the balance of body fluids. This is associated with a greater likelihood of dehydration. The results of the study were recently published in the journal "Sleep".

Who sleeps too little, in which too small hormones are released, which regulate the water balance in the body. This threatens dehydration. (Image: Sven Vietense /

Did you sleep badly? Then you should drink more water

If you do not feel well after a short night, these may be the effects of dehydration. Researchers suggest that people who have slept too little should drink more water after a night of lack of sleep to counteract the symptoms of dehydration. "Already alone six hours of sleep a night, your liquid balance can be influenced," warns study director Asher Rosinger.

The sleep and the water balance of the body are interrelated

The Penn State research team examined the fluid balance of volunteers in terms of sleep duration. The team found that participants who slept only six hours had significantly more concentrated urine. In addition, the short sleep group had a 59% greater chance of being insufficiently hydrated than adults who slept regularly for eight hours.

How does lack of sleep affect the water balance?

In further research, the researchers found that a particular hormone called vasopressin is responsible for this effect. This hormone regulates the body's water balance. Although released during both day and night, but as scientists show, the distribution process is accelerated in sleep cycle delays. "So if you wake up earlier, you may lose the window where more hormones are released, which disturbs the body's hydration," Rosinger said in a press release about the study results.

How to recognize a dehydration

According to the researchers, dehydration can affect many systems and functions of the body. Among other things, this could be reflected in perception, mood and physical and mental performance. If this condition is maintained over a long period of time, more serious health consequences such as urinary tract infections and kidney stones are at risk.

Further effects of lack of sleep

But sleep is not only important for the water balance. During sleep, the brain detoxifies and sleep disorders reduce the process, because during sleep the interstitial spaces of brain cells filled with brain water expand. These extensions are similar to a highway, where metabolic waste is transported from the brain to twice the speed. This could also be an explanation of why healthy sleep is considered a protective function against dementia.

However, too much sleep can be harmful

Both sleep and too little harm to our health. Another study found that people who sleep regularly for ten hours or more have an increased risk of developing a metabolic syndrome. This is a dangerous combination of obesity (especially the accumulation of abdominal fat), hypertension and high blood sugar and high levels of fat in the blood. (Vb)


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