Pack away the flannel pajamas. A handful of studies and surveys show sleeping naked could actually be good for you.
Six reasons why you should consider it:
1. You may like your partner more
A 2014 survey of Brits by Cotton USA (which promotes cotton products that likely include both pajamas and sheets) found that 57 percent of those who slept nude reported being happy in their relationship.
That was 9 percentage points more than PJ wearers, followed by 43 percent of nightie wearers. Onesie wearers—they apparently exist—brought up the rear at 38 percent, per the Daily Mail.
2. It could help prevent diabetes
It’s a bit of a stretch, but here’s the logic: Adults have small amounts of brown fat (aka “good fat”) in their bodies, and a 2014 study looked at how bedroom temperature affected the fat.
The four-month study was small: just five males who slept in rooms heated to 66-, 75-, or 81-degrees. After four weeks spent at the coldest temp, the men had almost twice as much brown fat, and their insulin sensitivity was better, which a researcher says could lower their diabetes risk.
Four weeks at 81 degrees undid all the benefits. Though the New York Times points out the test subjects slept in hospital scrubs, going naked could help prevent overheating.
3. It’s better for your lady health
Cosmopolitan cites advice from Dr.Jennifer Landa, who points out that an overly warm environment could spur too much yeast or bacteria to grow in the vaginal area. By passing on PJs, you’ll have a better chance of giving air access to the region, preventing infections.
4. It’s how our ancestors did it
If you’re a Paleo-dieter who eats like a caveman, why not sleep like one, too? Neurologist Rachel Salas with the Johns Hopkins Center for Sleep in 2013 told the Wall Street Journal that “back in the cave days,” people slept naked.
It was, in part, a means of protection from predators, and that feeling of safety could be imparted by sleeping similarly in modern day.
5. It could be better for the immune system
Mic reports that when skin-on-skin contact occurs, our adrenal glands get a message: lighten up on the production of the stress hormone cortisol.
As one doctor explains, “Cortisol suppresses the immune response.” Skin-to-skin contact also increases levels of oxytocin, which can have positive effects on blood pressure and healing”, says Salas.
6. Body temp affects sleep
A 2004 study found that for sleep to “initiate normally,” core body temp matters.
Per a researcher, “Studies of sleep onset insomniacs show that they consistently have a warmer core body temperature immediately before initiating sleep, when compared with normal healthy adults.”