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Placebo of sleep

By on September 8, 2014
waking_up

OK we admit it, we’re placebo junkies. After all to be accepted as medication by the FDA, placebo is the one to beat. If you can’t beat the placebo, you’re out. The placebo is the Rocky of pharmaceuticals.

Now we tend to think of placebos as being used instead of a pharmaceutical product. But of course, placebos are much more useful than that. Here is a study that proves the usefulness of placebos for sleep. Oh, not for getting to sleep, but for how you feel the next day. This reattach split the subjects into two groups. Each slept then were shown printouts that showed they had either slept more or less than the average REM sleep.

Of course, researchers being researchers, the results the subjects were shown had nothing at all to do with their actual sleep patterns, but were randomly assigned. Nevertheless, the subjects who were told they had a good night’s sleep performed better at various cognitive tasks than those who were told they had slept badly.

Who would have figgured?

Here’s the research:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/24417326/

And for those who like a more literary description here’s a post describing the research:

Why your perception of how you slept last night is so important. spring.org.uk

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