Weekend sleep-ins are good for you - study

One sleep expert said to be cautious about the findings. Photo credit: Getty

Don't feel so guilty next time you sleep in at the weekend - it could be prolonging your life.

A new study has found if you don't get enough during the week, a Sunday sleep-in could be what keeps you living to a ripe old age.

Researchers in Sweden looked at sleep data covering more than 43,000 people. For under-65s, they found while sleeping fewer than five hours a night increased mortality by 52 percent, the increased chance of death could be wiped out by getting the right amount once or twice a week.

"The mortality rate among participants with short sleep during weekdays, but long sleep during weekends, did not differ from the rate of the reference group," the study, published in the Journal of Sleep, said.

"In conclusion, short, but not long, weekend sleep was associated with an increased mortality."

But before you hit the sack to celebrate, the study also found there can be too much of a good thing.

"Short sleep (or long sleep) on both weekdays and weekend showed increased mortality."

One sleep expert said to be cautious about the findings, telling the Washington Post sleep can't be banked and cashed out later.