Some people don’t understand the very real struggle of getting out of bed in the morning. For some folks, it’s easy. They hear their alarm and immediately get up to start their day. For the rest of us though, we hit the snooze button incessantly, hoping that we eventually feel *zzzz…*
If you fall into that group, don’t worry–it turns out you’re not simply lazier than those early birds. A study published in the journal Nature Communications found that our ability to wake up in the morning is hard-wired into our DNA. Which means by the time you’re born, it’s pretty much determined whether or not you will be a night owl or an early riser.
You see, all humans are bound to something called a circadian rhythm, which is a fancy name for the internal biological clocks all living organisms have which are attuned to a 24-hour cycle. Depending on your DNA, researchers say that this clock can have a natural preference for day or night. It’s the same reason why jet lag can have such a profound effect on some people–their circadian rhythm is thrown completely out of whack.
With that in mind, California-based biotechnology company 23andMe analyzed the genomes of 89,283 people looking for something called nucleotide polymorphisms, which are the most common type of genetic variance among humans. Then, they compared those findings with responses to a web survey the same individuals completed which asked whether they prefer mornings or nights.
In the people who answered “yes” to being a morning person, 15 of those genetic variances showed up often enough to meet a statistical threshold. Which means morning people literally have something you don’t.
To make matters worse for the night owls out there, people who embrace mornings are also less likely to be depressed, obese or suffer from insomnia. Women are also “significantly” more likely than men to be morning people, but most of us come to appreciate the earlier part of the day as we get older as well, researchers say.
So you know what? Hit the snooze button one extra time tomorrow morning. Your body will thank–*zzzz…*