Why Sleep Is More Important Than Eating?


We can do without food of the week, but you should not sleep at least one night and our body begins to fail in its coordinated work.

During rare attempts to set “records” without sleep, scientists are trying to explore the effects of lack of sleep on the human body. The largest period, from the officially recorded ones, voluntarily spent by a healthy person without sleep, is 453 hours 40 minutes (almost 19 days) – Robert McDonald from California spent so much time in a rocking chair. He sat without sleep from March 14 to April 2, 1986 (Guinness Book of Records). True, a few years ago the committee of the Book decided to exclude “sleep sleep” from the list of records, due to the fact that it can seriously harm human health.

After two days without sleep, a change in the hormonal background begins, the suppression of the psyche intensifies, neural connections in the cerebral cortex are broken. In the period from 3 to 5 days, brain cells begin to break down. All this time, the load on all internal organs, and especially on the heart, increases. What happens next – can be considered irreversible changes that accumulate, entail a fatal outcome.

All this says how important sleep is for the normal functioning of our body

We eat every day, although we can do without food of the week, we believe that it is necessary to make up for the loss of energy. Many people also take supplements like Vitamin b17 with food as well. In fact, we think about food, just as we think about water, as a necessary element for our body right now. At the same time, for some reason, we think about sleep, how we think about our work. We lose an hour of sleep here, then there, then we try to sleep an extra hour, then again we miss an hour or two of sleep. We think that everything is normal, we compensate for the lack of sleep later. But not so simple.

What is the most important?

If we say that food is less important than sleep, then first of all you need to determine the importance. In real terms, the relative importance of elements such as food or sleep matters. That is, you can determine how long a person can refrain from eating or sleeping before irreversible consequences begin, and as a result, the body ceases to function, which will lead to death.

Michael Peel, a scientist who investigated the effects of hunger strikes, published a paper in 1997 documenting cases in which people were complete without food for 28, 36 days, and sometimes 40 days. True, they drank water in small sips.

Lack of sleep begins to affect almost immediately. After the first 24 hours without sleep, blood pressure rises and cortisol is released. After a week, hallucinations begin, the focus is lost, consciousness becomes distracted. On average, the upper limit for a person is the lack of sleep for 32 days. Then irreversible changes occur, hypothermia, failure of the immune system and death can occur.

What are the rates?

Not surprisingly, violent sleep deprivation is recognized as one of the methods of torture. The torture of lack of sleep is perhaps the only one that can break anyone. A person who was not allowed to sleep for some time initially began to experience terrible headaches, gradually came into a semi-unconscious state in which he was ready to confess to any crime. With such prolonged torture, a person often went crazy or even died. In addition, with a prolonged absence of sleep, the person was so weakened that he was easier to give in to other influences. Sometimes it was used as an agonizing mockery.

If hunger gradually destroys our vital functions, then sleep deprivation affects our brain and consciousness. Everything indicates that it is very important to maintain mental health due to normal, full sleep. However, we have recently been more concerned with maintaining physical conditions than psychological ones.

The average sleep time of working people is reduced. Almost 40% of the population sleeps less than 7 hours a day (an average of 6.8 hours). Although the recommendations of doctors on a full sleep are 8-9 hours a day.

Everyone is primarily trying to compensate for energy loss, that is, they monitor the intake of food and often overeat. After work, we come home, until late we sit in front of computer screens after a plentiful meal. The release of melatonin is delayed or stopped. We go to bed and get up in the morning with a feeling of tiredness, sleeplessness.


Food is what we have in abundance. Time is not. If we continue to underestimate the importance of sleep, then we will have even less time. Lately, sleep has become more important than food. Mental health is just as important as physical. For athletes, full sleep is the most important means of recovery. Without normal sleep, there will be no results.

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