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The sleepiest nation?

01-05-2012

As a race we love comparing nations, it seems to be a human past time to work out how is the most or least of something. There doesn’t seem to be a week that goes by where a newspaper doesn’t declare that a nation is the most depressed, or obese, or wealthiest. Which nation is the most sleepiest then?

The Paris based Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development recently conducted a number of surveys to answer this very question and found that France is the industrialised country where people spend the longest periods sleeping. The study found that the French sleep an average of around 530 minutes (or 8 hours and 50 minutes), compared to 518 for Americans and 469 or Koreans, who are the OECD’s “most awake” nation.

The study only looked at developed nations for which there was data but anecdotal evidence suggests that in other cultures that are not industrialised sleep patterns vary more dramatically throughout the year. In nomadic and hunter gatherer societies, people will sleep far less in certain times of the year and far more during the winter months.

For now though, it would seem that the French take the title for world’s sleepiest nation.


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