What happens inside our brain while we sleep? – Corriere.it

Sleeping (well) an adequate number of hours is not secondary to health and well-being, because if the brain rest more receptive to stimuli and better control impulses that could be deleterious. This is demonstrated by two different studies that have investigated what happens in our heads when we are in the arms of Morpheus: the first, by Swiss researchers from the University of Bern, observed for example that when we are asleep we are capable of learn even new words, without us even realizing it. In short, the idea that we have all cherished of learning while sleeping would not be so strange, judging from the experiments conducted on volunteers who during their sleep were made to listen to invented words associated with their translation into German: words never heard therefore, which then when awake participants associated with the correct meaning presented to them during sleep with a frequency that could not have been random.
By monitoring brain activity, the researchers observed that there were times during deep sleep cell cerebral were briefly in activity to subsequently pass in a coordinated way to inactivity; then when the awake volunteers remembered the words heard, the areas dedicated to language and theippocampo, the brain region essential for memory.

New memories

what also happens in the usual and conscious processes of learning new words: therefore even the “unconscious” brain while sleeping seems to be able to learn and form new memories, explains Marc Zst, the head of the study. Waiting for data to confirm the possibility of learning while sleeping, a German research reveals that the brain, when it rests well, is more able to control the urge to eat junk food: it is known that insomnia is associated with a greater risk of overweight and obesity, but until now it was thought to depend above all on the alteration of the hormones that regulate hunger and satiety and the consequent tendency to nibble at night, particularly deleterious for weight accumulation. The new data show that not getting enough sleep changes the activity of the brain’s gratification system in two specific areas, the amygdala and the hippocampus. When we don’t sleep, even just for one night, these areas are hyper-activated at the sight of food, in particular that which drips fat and sugar and which becomes so irresistible; not only that, if the sleep debt persists for a long time, the amygdala is even larger than normal and this, in turn, is associated with the tendency to overweight. Sleeping well and enough, therefore, also serves to be able to control fame of crap that makes you fat easily and quickly.

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June 26, 2021 (change June 27, 2021 | 19:25)