Mathematicians at the University of Michigan report that Dutch women sleep more than anyone else in the world.
This new study published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science reveals the sleeping habits of people from around the globe, using data captured by a smartphone app.
Researchers analysed patterns in the information gathered from 20 countries with the highest respondents to measure how factors like gender, cultural differences, and sun exposure affect the amount of shut-eye people get in different areas of the world.
The results demonstrate that cultural influences can override our natural circadian rhythms. This often leads people to go to bed later, which is linked to a loss of sleep. Even though society governs our bedtimes, our biological clocks — not our alarm clocks — still control wake times.
“These findings help to quantify the tug-of-war between solar and social timekeeping,” said Daniel Forger, professor of mathematics at the University of Michigan and co-author of the study.
The data also reveals that universally, women sleep about thirty minutes longer than men because they go to bed earlier and wake up later. Middle-aged men get the least sleep, often spending less than the recommended seven to eight hours between the sheets. People who spend some time in natural sunlight tend to log more hours sleeping than those who primarily stay indoors.
Forger said the team hopes to more accurately collect data on people’s sleep habits in the future using a wearable tracker data tracker, such as a wristband.
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