The glorious gift of lie-ins at the weekends could actually be a curse.
A new study has shown that having a mismatched sleeping pattern between the weekend and your working week results in a series of metabolic changes that bode ill for your overall health.
These negative effects include a higher insulin resistance, body mass index, triglycerides as well as a lower amount of good cholesterol, known as high-density lipoprotein (HDL).
According to research published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, all of the above factors are linked to diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
For the study, researchers observed 447 people between the ages of 30 and 54. Each person wore a device called Actiwatch-16 that recorded when its wearers fell asleep.
85 per cent of the participants slept in on their days off, while 15 per cent went to bed earlier.
The bigger the difference between sleep schedules during the working week and days off the higher the metabolic health problems, researchers noted.
However, the study was only conducted for seven days. In light of this, lead author Patricia M. Wong said: “It’s not clear yet that this is a long-term effect."
“But we think of this as people having to sleep and work out of sync with their internal clock, and that having to be out of sync may be having these health effects," she told the New York Times.