Here We Go Again

Axel HeaderThe new year and a good old cold…
We hope you have recovered enough from welcoming this new and unique 2016 – let it be a healthy, happy and successful one.

Be aware that it’s not the stars but the mind which determines this. And the mind needs – Sleep!

Previous research has suggested that short sleep duration and poor sleep continuity are associated with various chronic illnesses, increased susceptibility to infection, and premature death. Furthermore, experimental sleep deprivation has been found to negatively influence our body defense.

Now, in a study involving 164 healthy volunteers (58% men; mean age, 30), researchers in the U.S. have examined whether sleep duration might predict susceptibility to the common cold. Participants had sleep duration and quality recorded with a special wristwatch for 7 consecutive days and then received nasal drops containing an infectious dose of rhinovirus – which is a special nose-loving-virus. For 5 days thereafter, they were kept in quarantine and were checked daily for clinical signs of a cold.

Approximately 28 days after viral exposure, blood was drawn for serologic testing.

A total of 124 participants (76%) were infected, and 48 (29%) developed a cold with documented viral replication and clinical signs. A significant linear association was found between shorter sleep duration and increased risk for developing clinical signs of a cold. The likelihood of developing a cold was more than four times higher for participants who slept six hours than for those who slept seven hours. This association was independent of several factors, including age, sex, body-mass index, socioeconomic status, smoking, physical activity, alcohol consumption, perceived stress, and emotional characteristics. Sleep fragmentation was not associated with cold incidence (Sleep 2015 Sep; 38:1353).

There are a number of interesting facts:
Only 76% of exposed men were manifestly infected – that means that 24% never showed any virus in the blood and must therefore have shaken it off straight away. It never even really got up their nose.
Of the one’s infected (124) only less than half (48) showed signs of infection with the annoying symptoms of a common cold and these people were not the bar-hoppers, clubbing-adicts or other ‘groupies.’

Interestingly, longer sleep prevented development of clinical symptoms but not rhinovirus infection.
Scientists and statistics do like it un-straight-forward.

We do like it kiss ( keep it simple st***d ):
Our mothers told us already: “sleep it off sweetheart” – and put us to bed with a hot milk and honey.

Longer sleep duration, no matter if it is interrupted or not, prevents coming down with a cold.

Another good reason for a siesta even though it is not summertime.

Happy napping in 2016.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *