one thing is sleep well and quite another to have a good awakening. We may think that we have had enough sleep; but still, we wake up like we’ve been hit by a bus. Sometimes the fatigue it even lasts for the whole day and is linked to the following night. And start again. To prevent this from happening, it is not enough to sleep 8 hours, other factors must also be taken into account. For this reason, a team of scientists from the University of California Berkeley has analyzed what are the rules that we must meet to wake up with energy.
Obviously, as can be read in the study that has just been published in Nature Communicationsone of those rules is sleep enough hours. But there is more. For example, it is important to physical exercise and take a adequate breakfast. Ok, we eat breakfast once we are awake. However, if we choose our food well, that feeling of being hit by a bus may fade away.
Finally, there are other factors that cannot be controlled, such as age or mood. But, at least, by modifying the others, we can try to have a good awakening, which will keep us alert for a good part of the day.
Sleep well and wake up even better
In this study participated 833 peopleof which a good part of them were couples of twins. It was decided to include them because their results are very useful to verify if an issue has a mainly genetic or environmental. We must not forget that, unlike twins, their DNA is practically identical, so it is to be expected that they have the same results in purely genetic matters, but show environmental variations. In this case, basically, we wanted to be able to separate the possibility that there are people who are genetically better endowed to stay alert after sleep.
All participants had to answer some surveys about your habits. They were asked, of course, about the dream. But also because of their diet, their exercise routines or their state of mind.
Thus, they verified that sleeping longer and waking up later in the morning was related to a better state of alertness. Logical. But to achieve that state of alertness it was also necessary to maintain a good exercise routine during the day. Y have a proper breakfast.
It was observed that people who ate breakfasts higher in carbohydrates woke up in a better state of alertness than those who based their breakfast primarily on the proteins. But, be careful, when talking about carbohydrates we cannot be confused with the free sugars from juices, cookies or pastries.
This was verified by giving some of the participants a pure glucose drink as breakfast. In those cases, the feeling of alertness was dramatically reduced, so glucose spikes at breakfast can be seen as a negative.
Limitations and what cannot be controlled
The fourth factor that improved the alertness of the participants was their youth and their state of mind. However, this is something that logically cannot be controlled, so it would be necessary to focus above all on the three other factors.
Regarding the limitations of the study, it is important to note that the alertness of the participants was informed by themselves. For this reason, it may have biases that also make it difficult to compare some people with others. This is something the study authors hope to measure more specifically in future research, so much remains to be learned. In the meantime, it doesn’t hurt to exercise and eat a healthy breakfast every morning, in addition to getting at least 7 hours of sleep a day. The wake up alert will be one of the many benefits we can get.