Scientists Find Peculiar Connection Between People’s Sleeping Schedules and the Full Moon

Scientists Find Peculiar Connection Between People’s Sleeping Schedules and the Full Moon
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Who said that all those horror movies with werewolves aren’t inspired from reality at least a bit? We all know that the Moon plays a huge role in Earth’s habitability by moderating our planet’s wobble on its axis, creating tides, and more. But scientists led by UW professor of biology Horacio de la Iglesia have discovered that our natural satellite is also capable of affecting sleeping schedules.

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The mind-blowing news is brought by Phys.org, adding that our sleep cycles oscillate during the 29.5-day lunar cycle.

The full Moon causes people to go to a brief sleep later than usual

For the days that lead up to a full Moon, we are tempted to go to sleep later in the evening than usual and wake up after a shorter time. The researchers observed the peculiar differences for both urban and rural settings, from Indigenous communities located in northern Argentina to college students from the Seattle city.

Horacio de la Iglesia declared:

We see a clear lunar modulation of sleep, with sleep decreasing and a later onset of sleep in the days preceding a full moon,

And although the effect is more robust in communities without access to electricity, the effect is present in communities with electricity, including undergraduates at the University of Washington.

To get the results, the research team used wrist monitors to track the sleep patterns for 98 individuals who live in three Toba-Qom Indigenous communities from the Argentine province of Formosa.

The scientists also admit that there’s more to learn about the subject of the Moon affecting our sleep, and we are eager to hear from them again.

The researchers involved in the study belong to the National University of Quilmes in Argentina, the University of Washington, and the Yale University.


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Anna is an avid blogger with an educational background in medicine and mental health. She is a generalist with many other interests including nutrition, women's health, astronomy and photography. In her free time from work and writing, Anna enjoys nature walks, reading, and listening to jazz and classical music.

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