Updated 11:29 AM EDT, Tue, Jun 16, 2020

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Teen Owls Beware: Late Sleeping Time Causes Weight Gain


Something America's teens don't get too much of.

Millenials can think of every reason to stay up until the wee hours, or to stay up and not sleep at all. But beware of your sleeping time, youngsters. Aside from waking up half-asleep and with less focus on the day ahead, studies have proven that sleeping late leads to weight gain over a certain period of time.

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A report from Science Daily says that a new study done by the University of California has found that hitting the hay late among teenagers and young adults leads to an increase in the Body Mass Index or BMI. Berkeley researchers have conducted the study among 3,300 teenages and young adults. Every hour of sleep counts, because for every hour of sleep lost, a 2.1-point increase in BMI has been found to occur within a five-year period.

While this does not seem alarming at first glance, it should be noted that any increase in BMI may take a person from normal to overweight. Candidate for doctoral at the University of California, Lauren Asarnow, told CBS, "Conceivably, if you're going to bed an hour later, you could be shifting BMI categories from normal to overweight." A healthy adult has a BMI ranging between 18.5-24.9.

Exercise and screen time are said to be unable to mitigate the effects of the lost sleeping hours. Asarnow says that the results suggest that youngsters who sleep earlier will be able to set their weight at a "healthier scale" for when they have eached the latter stages of adulthood.

Surveys show that many adolescents are not getting the recommended nine hours of sleeping time. The University of California research has been done with the adolescents reporting what time they go to sleep and the researchers computing their respective BMI's.

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