Being a night owl is bad for your health! In fact, here’s what happens when you don’t get enough daylight, according to the latest research:

First: You’re more likely to have insomnia. That’s because direct solar rays suppress the release of melatonin, the hormone that causes sleepiness. A Dutch study shows that if you don’t have a change in melatonin levels during the day, your body doesn’t know when to rest or stay awake – so you get stuck in a middle ground, where you can’t fall asleep, and become unproductive.

The 2nd way being a night owl hurts your health: You feel more pain. In a new study by the University of Pittsburgh, researchers found that patients on the shady side of a hospital needed 28% more pain medication than patients on the sunny side! Why? It’s because your body releases more serotonin in sunlight – that’s a hormone linked to boosting your mood and one of the added benefits is you feel less pain.

Also know this: Darkness makes you pack on the pounds! In fact, research shows that people tend to eat more food when sitting in a dimly lit room, compared to one that’s brightly lit.  Experts say it’s because darkness lowers your “self-awareness,” meaning you don’t pay attention to how many calories you’re wolfing down.

Finally, being a night owl: Isn’t good for your brain! Believe it or not, a study from the University of Alabama shows that cognitive thinking declines when you’re around less sunlight. That’s because the vitamin D in sunlight affects blood flow in the brain, and without a healthy supply of blood, your brain struggles to stay sharp!