Can Less Shut-eye Lead to Diabetes?

BY HIV Plus Editors

November 01 2009 12:00 AM ET

The onset of type 2 diabetes is a growing problem for HIVers--and for Americans in general--because of rising rates of obesity, low rates of exercise, and the consumption of sugary, fatty foods. But another key risk factor may be how much sleep you're getting, scientists at the University of Chicago write in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

Their 14-day study of otherwise healthy adults showed that dropping from 8.5 hours of sleep per night to just 5.5 hours resulted in increases in blood sugar levels and a drop in the ability to effectively use insulin to control blood glucose.

"When the unhealthy aspects of the Westernized lifestyle are combined with reduced sleep duration," warns lead researcher Plamen Penev, MD, Ph.D., "this might contribute to the increased risk of many overweight and sedentary individuals developing diabetes."

Tags: Features

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