Insufficient Sleep of Lesser than 6 Hours May Rise the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes: Research

Type 2 Diabetes

Lacking sufficient sleep might elevate the likelihood of diabetes, regardless of our dietary habits. Adequate sleep is crucial for both our mental and physical health. It plays a vital role in memory consolidation and facilitates physical recuperation. Conversely, insufficient sleep has been linked to various health issues, including heart disease, obesity, neurodegenerative disorders, and depression. Despite its importance, statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that one in three adults in the U.S. fails to obtain adequate sleep.

New research from Uppsala University in Sweden suggests that this group may face an increased risk of Type 2 diabetes.

Diabetes impacts approximately one in ten Americans, as estimated by the CDC, with approximately 90 to 95 percent of cases being Type 2. Type 2 diabetes develops when the body’s cells become resistant to insulin, a hormone crucial for regulating blood sugar levels.

Type 2 diabetes is frequently preventable, with risk factors including obesity, lack of exercise, genetic predisposition, diet, and now, inadequate sleep.

In a study featured in the journal JAMA Network Open, researchers examined data from 247,867 participants sourced from the UK BioBank, a biomedical database aimed at exploring the interplay of genetics and environment in the onset of various diseases.

Participants were categorized into four sleep groups: normal sleepers, who obtained 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night; mild short sleepers, with 6 hours of sleep per night; moderate short sleepers, with 5 hours of sleep per night; and extreme short sleepers, with 3 to 4 hours of sleep per night. Subsequently, their dietary patterns were assessed based on the consumption of red meat, processed meat, fruits, vegetables, and fish specific to their population.

Approximately 12 years later, the participants underwent a follow-up examination. During these assessments, about 3.2 percent of participants had received a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes. Upon comparing these diagnoses with the initial data, the researchers discovered a notable trend: participants who slept for fewer than six hours per night were considerably more prone to developing Type 2 diabetes, with the risk escalating as sleep duration decreased. Remarkably, this correlation remained consistent even among individuals adhering to a healthy diet.

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