I think this varies person to person. I once read that Thomas Edison adapted to sleep only 5 hours a night…but now I’m finding gossip columns showing that many celebrities live on little sleep. Florence Nightingale was apparently an insomniac, sleeping about four hours a night. http://www.soyouwanna.com/site/syws/insomnia/insomnia.html
Napolean Bonaparte and Michaelangelo also only lived on 4 hours. Nikola Tesla is said to have slept for only two hours“He is said, by some of his followers, to only have slept 2 hours a day. He was definitely a night owl. But his staff has told of him taking many naps during the day. And it seems he may have been narcoleptic, and able to sleep with his eyes open.”
http://www.mysleepcenter.com/FamousSleepers.htmlThere are other sleep programs out there. For a while I tried one based on the theory that you don't need the 5 hours of heavy sleep in between the 3 hours fallingasleep and one hour waking up. Leo Da Vinici lived on a cycle like this, sleeping 15 minutes every four hours. But how much sleep do we NEED? The sleep Foundation emphasizes the difference in sleeprequirements not only for age groups, but weight classes and energy level.The conclude from their research that "There is strong evidence that sufficient shortening or disturbance of the sleep process compromises mood, performance and alertness and can result in injury or death." However, they also conclude that "On the other hand, some research has found that long sleep durations (nine hours or more) are also associated with increased morbidity".They give this chart to help organize their findings, but emphasize that it's heard to know how much sleep is just enough.
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