While most adult humans function best on seven to nine hours of sleep, a segment of the population The Wall Street Journal calls the "sleepless elite" get along just peachy without it. They're a different breed than the third of Americans who regularly get fewer than seven hours a night, but actually need it and end up bumbling through their days in a fog, putting themselves at risk for diabetes and obesity. No, this select one to 3 percent of the population positively thrives on their inhumanity:
Natural "short sleepers," as they're officially known, are night owls and early birds simultaneously. They typically turn in well after midnight, then get up just a few hours later and barrel through the day without needing to take naps or load up on caffeine. They are also energetic, outgoing, optimistic and ambitious, according to the few researchers who have studied them. The pattern sometimes starts in childhood and often runs in families.
Next they'll tell us they've used all those spare productive hours to evolve beyond other human needs like eating and excreting.
The Sleepless Elite [WSJ]