Grumpy or Gracious

Stayed up last night binging Star Wars: The Last Rehash?

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science saying…

It’s time to hit the hay! Sleep helps us fight off diseases and think clearly. But why does sleep deprivation make us so… GRUMPY?

Eti Ben Simon and team from University of California Berkeley wondered.

Scientists gave twenty-four RESTED study participants forty scenarios involving good deeds. Like giving up their seat on the bus or helping a stranger with directions. Then, they studied their willingness to help others after a sleepless night. 


When sleep-deprived, almost EIGHTY percent of people were less likely to help. This was true for both strangers AND people familiar to them! 

On brain imaging, areas involved in empathy were less active in sleep-deprived people. 

And nationally? Losing one hour of sleep during Daylight Saving Time dropped charitable giving by TEN percent.

The researchers think getting quality sleep promotes a more generous society! 

So get some rest! That new Star Wars oughta put you to sleep!


Ben Simon, E., Vallat, R., Rossi, A., & Walker, M. P. (2022, August 23). Sleep loss leads to the withdrawal of human helping across individuals, groups, and large-scale societies. PLOS Biology, 20(8), e3001733.