Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. this Sunday, meaning it's once again time to move the clocks ahead one hour. This change causes millions of Americans to lose an hour of sleep, effectively moves an hour of daylight from morning to evening.
Generally, adjusting to the time change in the spring is more difficult than when the clocks go back one hour in the fall. Losing an hour of sleep does more than just make you feel groggy. It can affect your mental and physical health.
There are real health consequences are increased motor vehicle and job accidents, heart attacks and strokes.
Mood & Productivity
It disrupts your sleep cycles. So, the body needs to adjust to going to sleep earlier, which may leave people restless at night and cause sleepiness the next day.
On average, Americans lose 40 minutes of sleep when we set the clocks ahead in the spring. Such sleep disturbances can lead mood disruptions and increased irritability.
Sleep disruptions can also affect memory, performance and concentration levels. A 2012 study published in the Journal of Applied Psychology found that shifts related to daylight saving time led to a dramatic increase in "cyberloafing" -- killing time on the internet instead of working.
Sleep deprivation can affect motor skills and research shows that it may lead to more workplace injuries and care accidents, particularly around daylight saving time transitions.
A 2009 study examined data on over 500,000 mining injuries from 1983 to 2006 and found a 5.7 percent increase on the Monday following the time change. What's more, the injuries were more severe, leading to a 68 percent increase in the number of days of work missed.
In a study being published in American Economic Journal next month, Smith analyzed vechicle accidents just before and after daylight saving time in the U.S. over a 10-year period. The results showed a 6 percent increase in crashes immediately after people reset their clocks in the spring, which amounted to more than 300 deaths.
Increase in heart attacks and strokes
Researchers from Finland analyzed over a decade of stroke data and found that the overall rate of ischemic stroke -- which accounts for the majority of stroke cases and is caused by a clot blocking blood flow to the brain -- was 8 percent higher during the first two days after a daylight saving time transition.
A 2014 study published in the journal Open Heart also found that setting clocks ahead one hour in the spring was also associated with higher short-term risk of heart attack.
Appetite and diet changes
Any amount of sleep deprivation can affect the hormone levels in the body, which can lead to changes in appetite, an increase in cravings, and potential overeating.
"Sleep deficiency increases the release of the hormone ghrelin, which makes us hungry, and decreases the release of the hormone leptin, which makes us feel satisfied when we eat," Czeisler explained.
Sleep disturbances also increase insulin resistance and encourage the body to store more calories in fat, he said.
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Source: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/daylight-saving-time-affects-your-health-wellness/ & https://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/life/columns/dr-nina-the-health-risks-of-springing-forward/article_3524bbbd-0fab-5c0e-b979-be182652e973.html