Food instead of sleep? Why, after a sleepless night draws to harmful dishes

When a man sleeps little, changed his food preferences. And healthy salad for dinner suddenly turns into two servings of fries. Why is this happening, experts have found.

Еда вместо сна? Почему после бессонной ночи тянет к вредным блюдам

If you don’t get enough sleep, the smell of fatty foods for you is particularly attractive. That’s the conclusion reached by scientists from three American universities – northwestern, Penn state and San Diego. The results of their study published in the journal eLife.

Previously it was found that lack of sleep changes our food preferences. Those who are not getting enough sleep, drawn to high-calorie and unhealthy food – French fries, donuts, chips and so on.

To find out what mechanism underlies these data, the researchers conducted a small experiment involving 29 men and women aged 18 to 40 years. All the participants were divided into two groups. The first was allowed to sleep for four weeks in normal mode, and then only for four hours. For the participants from the second group on the contrary – at first a forced lack of sleep, and then normal sleep.

The researchers carefully recorded their daily food preferences and measured the level of endocannabinoid, which is also responsible for the brain’s response to odors and other aspects of behavior associated with food. It was found that the level of one of these compounds, 2-OG, always increases after sleep deprivation, and this is associated with changes in food preferences.