And buh-bye to your precious sick days Research has shown that when you're sleep deprived, the number of T-cells (white blood cells) goes down and the number of inflammatory cytokines (small proteins that relay signals to other cells) goes up, making your body more susceptible to catching colds and flus. Pulling all-nighters can also make your flu shots null and void by suppressing your immune response. This causes your body to develop fewer antibodies to certain vaccines, making your body slow to respond to immunizations -- so you're more likely to catch the flu and keep it.
Another thing you're likely to catch with a case of the sniffles? Heart disease. Studies show the less you sleep, the higher your levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a protein that rises in response to inflammation and researchers believe plays a crucial role in marking the development of heart disease. It's not a coincidence that your mortality also rises when you log lower than six hours of sleep a night.
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