Zombies are mythical undead, corporeal revenants created by the reanimation of a corpse, and they’re becoming more popular on screen.
While in the TV series The Walking Dead, zombies do not sleep, Warm Bodies zombies do sleep and dream. There is no proven theory about this topic, but there are lots of assumptions.
Do zombies sleep? Most people believe that zombies never sleep. They, however, go into a dormant state. They only enter a phase where their physical activities are lessened but are still conscious. They are awake and are only waiting for stimulus.
This whole zombie thing is a fun topic! Let me continue talking about zombies and why they do not sleep in this article.
Why Zombies Do Not Sleep
There are numerous theories about why humans need to sleep. But does this apply to zombies? Or any other mythological creatures? That depends.
Unlike humans, zombies do not need bodily restoration. And because they no longer have brains, they certainly do not require brain plasticity. There are more things to talk about zombies and sleep. Let me give you more details.
Repair And Restoration Theory Of Sleep
It claims that sleeping provides the body with the much-needed opportunity to restore and rejuvenate itself. It includes repairing and revitalizing the physiological mechanisms that keep the body and mind safe and functioning.
Since the bodies of zombies are actively rotting, they will not need this. There are no living cells in a zombie, so regeneration is impossible.
Energy Conservation Theory Of Sleep
Competition for and efficient use of energy is crucial in natural selection. The energy conservation theory claims that sleep has everything to do with saving an individual’s energy.
This theory does not even apply to zombies because they do not have a metabolism, or if they do, it is different. They do not have to save any of their resources because of their changed or non-existent metabolism.
Inactive Theory Of Sleep
The inactivity theory is based on the idea of evolutionary strain. It states that inactive animals during the night are less likely to die from predation in the dark. It results in an evolutionary and reproductive advantage.
Since zombies would be at the top of the food chain, they would be safe from predators. They may sleep, but they are unable to do so. Instead of sleeping, they can go into a deep dormant state.
Assuming They Do Sleep
Now say, for example, they do sleep. Will it benefit the zombies, or will it only end them? Since there are no real-life zombies explored yet, there are dozens of assumptions. I, for one, cannot say that these assumptions are accurate or not because I never met a zombie.
Zombies feed on humans, or maybe animals, too. According to stories, they can metabolize their food. It keeps the integrity of their body against decay. On a side note, can you imagine how scarier they appear when their decayed body starts decaying more?
Let us say they, like humans, zombies need sleep. Now during nighttime, they get tired after a day of hunting for food and no luck.
They take a rest and become unaware of their surroundings. They would not know if food already passed their way since sleep often shut our senses down.
If zombies sleep, humans would notice and can track their sleeping schedule. It will make escaping and hiding easier since sleeping often shuts the senses down.
Hence, zombies would no longer be able to eat humans if they go on a full sleep. As a result, they will start to decay.
I have not mentioned this, but zombies cannot die (well, according to myths and stories). If zombies cannot eat humans, they will start to metabolize their bodies.
But you can see in some movies that they eat animals. However, animals are not as wise as most humans. As a result, animals would go insanely extinct.
Zombies will start metabolizing their internal organs to sustain them for hopefully a few weeks.
They will begin metabolizing internal organs faster if they are not getting any hydration or enough calories like human brains. So, they will start decaying once again from within their body.
If zombies are always awake, they have higher chances of getting vitamins, calories, and minerals that will make them thrive.
If they have a good source of these nutrients, they could last up to 10 weeks before losing all motor functions. Also, take note, zombies no longer have the motor function, so imagine if they lose what they have left. Again, these are just assumptions.
As I mentioned above, zombies cannot die. Regardless if they do not sleep or eat, they cannot die. However, they will continue to decay until their bodies begin to turn to husks. They will digest all their nutrition sources inside their bodies.
They are slowly disintegrating to husks and losing all that’s left of their motor function. You may think that they are dying, but they certainly are not.
They are alive but cannot move. At that point, they no longer have energy in their body. They already digested everything inside their body, and nothing is left.
When a zombie has come to that point, they can no longer travel to hunt. Hence, they are no longer a threat to humans. Humans can walk past them and not be a victim.
Facts About Nocturnal Zombie
I have watched many zombie movies and television series, but one thing I remember most is The Walking Dead. In this TV series, zombies are more active at night.
Is it because they are just nocturnal creatures? I doubt it since they can still be found hunting during the day!
Zombies are created through the dead, mediation, or according to some science, an effect of tetrodotoxin. Regardless of the reason, the process of turning into a zombie includes permanent brain damage. It disables everything but hunting senses.
At this point, it is in a permanent day state. When the body clock is set to daytime, metabolism is high. It requires a zombie to have high energy all of the time and burn it all up fast. As a result, high prey drive.
The digestive activity, on the other hand, is peaking at night. Since the body clock of a zombie is set to daytime, their digestion is less effective.
They have a huge appetite, and they consume a high amount of food, but they do not digest it well. What they do digest is quickly burned.
Unless a zombie apocalypse happens, we will never honestly know the answer to this. But based on myths, zombies do not sleep because they do not need to.
They are not like humans that get tired and need to freshen their body and brain to function. They are dead creatures with the drive to kill animals and humans to thrive.
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