- Lack of sleep can promote metabolic disorders
- Sufficient sleep reduces the risk of insulin resistance
- Researchers advise: Good sleep hygiene to control metabolic diseases
Sacrificing as little as 30 minutes of sleep per day may have a long-term negative effect on metabolism and autoimmune diseases such as diabetes. Scientists see this knowledge as a great opportunity for successfully managing diabetes.
Due to social and professional commitments, many people sleep too little during the week, and try to compensate this at the weekend. But even if such a rhythm is initially manageable and people like to sleep in on their day off, the loss of sleep during the working week could cause serious problems in the long term: for example, metabolic disorders, which in turn increase the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus. This is what a study from 2015 wants to prove.
Connection between sleep loss and obesity
Research has already shown that there is a connection between short sleep duration and overweight or diabetes. This study, however, shows concrete evidence that even 30 minutes less sleep per night can have significant consequences for obesity and insulin resistance. The main author of the study, Prof. Shahrad Taheri, sees this as confirmation that sleep loss can have a detrimental effect on health and influence the metabolism. “Sleep loss is common in modern society, but the consequences for the metabolism have only become clear to us in the last decade. Our research suggests, on the one hand, that adequate sleep can have positive consequences for a slender body shape and metabolism, and on the other hand that focusing on good sleep can be very helpful when trying to control obesity or diabetes.
Study suggests that a sleep deficit promotes insulin resistance
The study involved 522 patients who had recently received their type 2 diabetes diagnosis. The participants kept a sleep diary for one week and calculated their weekly sleep debt. Their body measurements were taken and blood levels were checked for insulin resistance. At the beginning of the test, participants with a sleep deficit tended to be 72% more likely to be obese than those without a sleep deficit. Six months later, a significant connection between obesity and insulin resistance could be observed.
After 12 months, the risk of obesity and insulin resistance was increased by 17% and 39%, respectively, for every 30 minutes of sleep deficit.
In order to delay or stop the course of diabetes, the researchers recommend taking into account all factors that affect metabolism – including sleep. They recommend consistent and appropriate sleep hygiene in order to control metabolic diseases better in the future.
Reduced blood sugar level due to body grounding
A study by doctors at the Polish Military Clinical Hospital in Bydgoszcz specifically addressed the question of whether body grounding can support the naturally occurring physiological processes. For this purpose, patients with autoimmune diseases such as diabetes or thyroid disease were examined; half of them sleeping on special grounding pads and the other half being feignedly grounded without their knowledge. The result: The participants who had spent their night on this special grounding pad had significantly reduced blood sugar levels, while the levels of the placebo group remained almost unchanged. This suggests that nocturnal body grounding can be a valuable measure in the treatment or prevention of diabetes.