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Sleeping Habits Linked to Diabetes Risk, According to Study

According to a study published in Diabetes Care, getting 5 hours or less of sleep or nine hours or more each night may increase risk of developing diabetes.

The study included more than 70,000 diabetes-free women that were followed for a 10-year period. The study concluded that diabetes symptoms were 34 percent more likely to develop in women who slept five hours or less every night than women who slept for seven or eight.

Comparatively, a 35 percent risk increase of developing diabetes symptoms was evident in women who slept nine hours or more each night.

During the course of the study, 1,969 women developed diabetes and most exhibited symptoms of the condition.

The link between sleeping too much or too little and diabetes remains a mystery to the researchers. However, one theory among them involves a hormone that may play a role in signaling the body to stop eating called leptin.

Levels of leptin may be reduced as a result of lack of sleep. This may possibly cause people to gain weight and develop diabetes. When factors such as overweight and obesity were removed by the researchers, there was no link between lack of sleep and diabetes. These findings suggest that diabetes may be affected by sleep indirectly by promoting weight gain.

One theory why risk of diabetes may be increased by sleeping too much is that people who sleep excessively typically have poorer health in general. They may also suffer from a condition that may prevent restful sleep and cause people to sleep more overall due to feeling tired called sleep apnea. Sleep apnea by itself may also increase diabetes risk.

Frank Mangano’s commentary:

Sleep is essential to human function. It is how we rest our mind and body. Too little sleep is something that many Americans suffer from as we live in a fast paced, high driven society.

Sleeping excessively however – as the study points out – isn’t much better. Aside from posing risk of diabetes symptoms, sleeping excessively leaves less time to enjoy life.

I recommend sleeping between seven & eight hours per night. This will give your brain and body plenty of time to “re-charge” while still leaving you 16 hours to live life!

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