Sleep is an influence on diabetes risk

Thu, 16 Mar 2006
A recent study has found that maintaining an optimum amount of sleep per night can reduce the risk of diabetes, whilst those people who undersleep (less than six hours per night) or oversleep (over eight hours per night) were found to be more likely to develop the disease.

The study was based around over 1000 elderly and middle-aged men who lived in or around Bolton, and was conducted by a team from Yale University medical school who have expert knowledge of diabetes.

The study commenced in the late 1980s, when none of the study group had developed diabetes. After a first-stage evaluation of blood samples and health habits (including sleep), the study group were interviewed again in the middle 90s and between 2002 and 2004. Of the group, ninety developed diabetes during the course of the study.

The researchers found that seven hours of nightly sleep were ideal. Those men who had less than five or six hours per night were found to be twice as likely to develop the disease, whereas those men who slept for more than eight hours per night were three times as likely. The question of how the sleep affected the development of diabetes remains.
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