Early Bird vs Night Owl: Pros and Cons

Early Bird vs Night Owl: Pros and Cons

We all know that sleep is essential. Yet, there are people that stay up beyond midnight like it’s normal and those that hop out of bed at 4am or 5am without a problem. Beyond the benefits of a solid 7-8 hour slumber, and excluding job related responsibilities, it is a clear case of genetics that some people rise early or stay up late.

These early bird vs night owl pros and cons enable you to decipher if going with or against your gene expression could be a beneficial health move.

Up and At ‘ Em

The early riser is associated with some bullet points that make the title.

According to Healthline, an early riser is described as:

  • Go to bed early
  • Wake up early
  • Feel their best as the day begins
  • Have less energy in the late afternoon and evening
  • Have a hard time staying awake past a certain hour

Howlin’ at the Moon

Night owls show some significant traits as well. Healthline states that a night owl consists of:

  • Stay up late
  • Enjoy sleeping in
  • Feel their best later in the day
  • Have more energy at night
  • Feel tired after waking up early
  • Have a hard time staying alert during the day

Early Riser Pros

Getting up early offers some good benefits that may benefit your overall health. These early riser pros include:

  • No One Bothers You – Enjoy the solitude and uninterrupted morning time for anything from meditation to getting a jump start on work.
  • Connect More – Before the day becomes bogged down with business, the early riser can connect with dog walkers, joggers, morning workers and more without the stress of the moving day pulling you away.
  • Early Moves – Exercise is essential any time of day however mornings may offer an advantage.

News Medical Life Sciences reported on the benefits of early to mid-morning exercise stating that it is associated with “improved management of metabolic pathways and energy homeostasis” including:

  • Higher reduction in nocturnal systolic blood pressure
  • Higher duration of deep sleep at night time
  • Significantly lower rate of hypoglycemia
  • Improved metabolic control
  • Maximum cellular oxygen consumption
  • Higher revitalizing effects
  • Beneficial changes in skeletal muscle metabolism
  • Higher utilization of carbohydrates
  • Increased breakdown of fats and amino acids

Early Riser Cons

Waking up at the crack of dawn may not be for everyone. Here are some of the possible cons:

  • Exhaustion – Many early risers hold a particular gene that gets them up no matter what. Most don’t even need an alarm clock. Therefore, if an early riser goes to bed late the morning wakeup time remains the same leading to potential exhaustion.
  • Stress May Rise – According to Career Addict, “Studies conducted at the University of Westminster concluded that people who were getting up before seven in the morning had higher levels of stress hormones throughout the day than those who slept a little longer.”
  • Missing Out – For some early risers bedtime also comes early and socializing could suffer. Many early risers cannot focus after a certain time and could become tired at party settings.

Night Owl Pros

Some people feel that real life excitement doesn’t happen until the sun goes down. If this is true, some of the pros of being a night owl include:

  • Productivity – Working late into the night is similar to an early riser, nobody bothers you because they’re most likely sleeping. Therefore, productivity could be a definite benefit of burning the midnight oil.
  • Social Extravaganza – If you saunter through most vibrant cities, the nightlife can seem enticing. Night owls certainly get to enjoy a social extravaganza of bars, clubs, restaurants and more which are often a source of excitement.
  • Parenting – It may be hard to wake up early for child care but if you’re a night owl once the little ones go to bed you’ll have plenty of time to yourself to get stuff done. This works well if your partner is an early riser and can take that shift as you sleep in.

Night Owl Cons

  • Health Risk – There are some studies that show staying up late to possibly be a risk to optimal health. According to the author of Sleep Ninja, Karl Rollison, “Being out of sync with our natural rhythms and being awake when we are supposed to be asleep is really bad for our mental health, and can cause anxiety and ‘social jet-lag’.” There is also evidence that late night shift work is associated with diabetes, breast cancer, and high blood pressure.
  • Trouble – It seems that most nefarious things happen at night. Being a night owl may put you at risk of getting in or getting in the way of various dangerous situations that may involve drugs, alcohol, or illegal activities.
  • Depression – Going against your natural circadian rhythm could cause less benefits from mood enhancing hormones like serotonin, dopamine and endorphins.

Although you may consider yourself an early riser or night owl m, trying to stay in the middle may be the best choice. Listen to your body and adhere to seasonal cues like light changes and food associations which may help ground you. These early bird vs night owl pros and cons are just a way to assess the best choice.