What is the minimum amount of sleep per night for an adult before jeopardizing your health?
It is said that the minimum amount of sleep per night for an adult is six hours but that really eight hours is the ideal.
The thing to remember though is that firstly as we get older we tend to need less and less sleep, presumably due to the fact that as we get older we don't use up as much energy any more as we can't move so fast and so consequnetly don't need to recharge our batteries so much. And secondly every person is different. Some need to sleep much more than others while some can get by without hardly any sleep at all.
At the end of the day, I think that your body is the wisest monitor of all and if it asks for sleep it's because you need it and if it doesn't ask for sleep it's because you don't need it!!
That's going to vary with the age of the adult, their physical fitness and daily activity levels, any underlying medical conditions, diet and genetics.
However, many studies have shown that overall, adults get at least one to two hours of sleep per night LESS than they actually require for optimal health.
In addition to the answers given, re. age and other variations, I have heard that army training can work on batches of 3-hour sleep periods. Apparently that is meant to be the optimum minimum amount, allowing enough rest to be useful.
I imagine that this would jeopardise health, though, in the long term. I think I am in danger on that front in writing so late (early in morning), so apologies if this is not as clear as I meant it to be!
When I was In the Navy, we get 4hrs of sleep before doing 2hrs of duties (work) so I believe we need at least 4hrs of sleep to be combat ready. I dont know how long we can can go on this 4hrs work 2 hrs work routine, the max I did was 7 days (I was 18 then).
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