Do you have an appointment for a Covid-19 vaccine? Pay attention to your night before. According to the findings of a study published March 13 in the journal Current Biology, a good sleep allows the immune system to respond better to vaccination. Indeed, the researchers found that those who slept less than six hours a night produced fewer antibodies than those who slept seven hours or more. Specifically, the deficit corresponds to two months of decreasing antibodies. Thus, sleeping less than six hours reduces the immune response to vaccines. But, the results were only significant in men.
“Good sleep not only amplifies but can also prolong the duration of protection of the vaccine“, assures the main author Eve Van Cauter, professor emeritus at the University of Chicago (United States). As part of this study, the researchers analyzed the results of seven studies concerning vaccines against certain infections. And they compared the antibody response of participants according to the amount of sleep (light or heavy sleepers).
“We know from immunological studies that sex hormones influence the immune system. In women, immunity is influenced by the state of the menstrual cyclecontraceptive use and by menopause and post-menopausal status, but unfortunately none of the studies we summarized had data on sex hormone levels,” summarizes lead author Karine Spiegel.
Additionally, the impact of sleep was greater for adults aged 18 to 60 than for people over 65. With these results, the researchers want to give patients a simple way to act on the effectiveness of vaccination: “When you see the variability in the protection offered by Covid-19 vaccines, people who have pre-existing conditions are less protected, men are less protected than women, and obese people are less protected than people who are not obese. These are all factors over which an individual person has no control, but you can modify your sleep.” .
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