Obese or overweight diabetics can improve the quality of the sleep by losing weight, according to new research.
The six-month study, led by Professor Kerry Stewart, of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, involved 77 overweight/obese individuals with either type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes.
The participants were randomly assigned to one of two weight loss regimes – a diet and exercise programme or a diet-only plan.
They were also surveyed for sleep problems, such as sleep apnea, excessive sleep and insomnia, and had body mass index (BMI) and abdominal fat measurements taken at the start and end of the study.
After six months, both groups lost an average of around 15 pounds, including a 15 per cent reduction in belly fat .
At the same time, the researchers found that overall sleep quality among the 55 participants who completed the study improved considerably, with both weight loss groups enhancing their overall sleep score by 20 per cent.
The authors said the findings indicate a connection between a loss in weight, particularly around the belly, and better sleep.
Prof Stewart said: “The key ingredient for improved sleep quality from our study was a reduction in overall body fat, and, in particular belly fat, which was true no matter the age or gender of the participants or whether the weight loss came from diet alone or diet plus exercise .”

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