Go to bed on time every day, please. Bonus points if fasted & sober.

Nov 12, 2021

Everyone is gonna hate me for this. The opposite of that advice is how an alarming number of adults do it.

But nearly every day now, at an increasing pace, another study comes to my attention* highlighting the lowest hanging fruit in the premature mortality game.

*by all means, keep tagging me in articles of this nature! I don’t find it annoying or bothersome at all (not being sarcastic)

Accelerometer-derived sleep onset timing and cardiovascular disease incidence: a UK Biobank cohort study (2021)

You probably saw this study, or at least a news blurb.

Just looking at bedtimes and cardiovascular events (or cardiorenal abnormalities, which is probably a better surrogate for what’s going on) (ie, a lot of shit goes awry before your organs explode and it is reflected in standard blood tests, which is kinda why I think organ imaging studies are 1000x more valuable than blood tests if you’re concerned with random premature mortality events) (yes, I remember “incidentalomas”).

In the figure below, actigraphy* vs. cardiorenal events: the yellow line is people who consistently went to bed 10-11 pm. The “night owls” fared the worst. Maybe chronotypes are real (and I think they are), but it’s a species-level phenomena and humans are not “night owls.”

*BIG strength of this study. Objectively measured sleep or “stillness.” Most sleep metrics are highly confounded by recall bias. Accelerometer data are less likely to suffer from that.

Early to bed, early to rise something something something

Breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, dinner like a pauper…

See a trend?

“While later sleep onset times were associated with an increased incidence of CVD, the relationship was U-shaped, agreeing with the idea that the optimum sleep onset time falls within a specific range of the diurnal cycle and that deviations from this range, either too early or too late, may be problematic.”

Falling asleep too early may suggest pathology; like, “why are you sleepy so early?” Plus there weren’t many people at this end of the spectrum, weakening the ability to draw meaningful conclusions; unlike the “night owls.”

Going to bed too late is like, “gotta check instagram and twitter under the sheets in bed.” No bueno.

Evening home lighting adversely impacts the circadian system and sleep (Cain et al., 2020)

“sleep health can be thought of as a multidimensional construct including sleep quality, efficiency, duration, alertness, and timing”

You can’t control how much sleep you’re actually getting, but you can control quiet time in darkness at night. That should start around 10-11 pm and at least give yourself the option of sleeping for 8+ hours. That’s largely accomplished by going to bed earlier. Probably some seasonality to that.

Acute exposure to evening blue-enriched light impacts on human sleep

(Chellappa et al., 2018)

The “fasted” comment in the title is more related to #eTRF, which I’m still finding to be the only beneficial manifestation of intermittent fasting. It’s not complicated; just have breakfast around sunrise and dinner prior to sunset. Lunch somewhere in between. I’m also still pro 3MAD mainly to accommodate optimal protein (4MAD would probably be better for MPS but whatevs I can’t be bothered with that; 3 meals no snacks for me). 

This whole paper: Circadian rhythms in cardiac metabolic flexibility.

What do you think? Leave a comment!

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calories proper

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