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Humans Evolved To Sleep Better In Least Time

Update Date: Dec 15, 2015 09:31 AM EST
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The manner in which humans sleep indicates that they may have evolved to get less, as well as more efficient sleep, say scientists, after studying animals and humans, according to scienceworldreport.

Researchers studied and documented the sleeping patterns of multiple mammals, including 21 species of primates, right from baboons to lemurs to orangutans, chimpanzees and---humans.

With statistics, the scientists could explain the position of each species in the "primate family tree".

Scientists found that while humans can get by with just seven hours of sleep, animals such as pig-tailed macaques and grey mouse lemurs required almost 14 to 17 hours.

"Humans are unique in having shorter, higher quality sleep," said David Samson, one of the co-authors of the new study, in a news release.

However, the evolution to get less sleep is certainly not due to modern electronic gadgets. Examining the sleep habits of people living in three hunter-gatherer societies without electricity show that those people without electricity got even less sleep than those with modern gadgets.

This was mainly because humans shifted from sleeping in "beds" to the trees to finally hitting the sack on the ground. They then began to sleep in large groups around the fire, in larger groups in order to fight the predators such as leopards and hyenas. Hence, humans evolved in order to get the maximum sleep in the least number of hours.

The findings are published in the journal Evolutionary Anthropology: Issues, News and Reviews.

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