Archive for June 9th, 2007

Sleep and The Risks of Obesity and Diabetes…

June 9, 2007

One of the highlights of the Endocrine Society meeting that I attended just this week in Toronto Canada was  a plenary session on Sleep Debt and the Risk of Diabetes and Obesity

While reading Canada’s daily newpaper, the headline was that… companies are now allowing their workers also to take a nap in between work schedules with nap stations in their offices to allow workers to relax and sleep and be more productive as a result.  Suggesting that sleep debt is actually affecting productivity in the work place!

BUT how much sleep is healthy? or how many hours of sleep are needed to reduce diabetes and obesity risks? 

The magic number is 7 hours!!!

A study published in Diabetes Care this March of 2006 showed that  men who got little sleep (< 7 hours ) or a lot of sleep (8-10 hours) were more likely to develop diabetes than men with 7 hours of nightly sleep.  The same token people with less than 7 hours of sleep have a 23% to 73% increased risk of obesity!

But quality of sleep is also as important. Deep sleep is a must.  Even 7 hours of light sleep may do no good but harm.

Again the stress hormones may be responsible as more activation of the sympathetic nervous system resulting in overproduction of cathecholamies may be result in the increased risk.  Likewise, obesity may follow if you sleep less because you easily feel hungry and you tend to eat more if you’re awake!

So…..

Sleep Well and Be Well!

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