Middle-Aged Women Sleep Deprivation / Sleep Disorder Might be A Cause of Obesity

Middle-Aged Women Sleep Deprivation / Sleep Disorder Might be A Cause of Obesity

More than 100 different disorders of sleeping and waking have been identified. They can be grouped in four main categories:


Sleep deprivation results in a significant reduction of cortisol secretion the next day and this reduction appears to be, to a large extent, driven by the increase of slow wave sleep during the recovery night. Deep sleep has an inhibitory effect on the HPA [Hypothalmic-pituatary] axis while it enhances the activity of the GH [growth hormone] axis. In contrast, sleep disturbance has a stimulatory effect on the HPA axis and a suppressive effect on the GH axis. These results are consistent with the observed hypocortisolism in idiopathic hypersomnia and HPA axis relative activation in chronic insomnia. Finally, our findings support previous hypotheses about the restitution and immunoenhancement role of slow wave (deep) sleep.

Sleep disorders involve any difficulties related to sleeping, including difficulty falling or staying asleep, falling asleep at inappropriate times, excessive total sleep time, or abnormal behaviors associated with sleep.Sleep apnea more commonly affects obese people, but it may affect anyone with a short neck or a small jaw, regardless of weight.

Disorders include:

A 2005 large study of a nationally representative sample of about 10,000 adults, suggested that the U.S.'s obesity epidemic might have as one of its causes a corresponding decrease in the average number of hours that Americans are sleeping.[18] The study suggests that this might be happening because sleep deprivation might be disrupting hormones that regulate appetite. The study found that people between the ages of 32 and 49 who sleep less than 7 hours a night are significantly more likely to be obese. Other scientists hold that the physical discomfort of obesity and related problems, such as sleep apnea, reduce an individual's chances of getting a good night's.

Recently,a new study findings suggest that middle-aged women may be able to sleep their way to a trimmer body.

In a study that followed more than 68,000 U.S. women for 16 years, researchers found that those who caught more zzz's each night tended to put on less weight during middle-age.

What's more, women who typically clocked 5 hours of sleep were one third more likely than those who slept for 7 hours to have a substantial weight gain -- 33 pounds or more -- during the study period.

The findings, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology and presented earlier this year at a medical conference, add to evidence that sleep habits affect a person's weight.

Although the reasons aren't clear, some research suggests that sleep deprivation alters hormones involved in appetite control and metabolism.

It's also possible that people who sleep fewer hours either eat more or, because of fatigue,exercise less often.

Whatever the reason, the new findings suggest that sleeping 7 hours or more each night could help prevent the middle-age spread, according to the study authors.

Dr. Sanjay R. Patel of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland led the research.

Patel and his colleagues based their findings on data from the long-running Nurses' Health Study, which has followed the health of thousands of female nurses for the past 30 years.

On average, women who in 1986 said they usually slept 5 hours or less per night gained more weight over the next 16 years than those who slept for 7 hours per night or longer.

Although the effect was modest, Patel's team notes, even a relatively small weight gain can make a health difference; putting on an extra 10 pounds has been shown to double a person's risk of diabetes, for example.

And some of the weight gain was substantial. Sleep-deprived women were more likely to gain in excess of 30 pounds, and were 15 percent more likely to become obese as they grew older.

Consuming extra calories could not be blamed for the weight gain, the investigators add, because women who slept less also ate less. Similarly, differences in levels of physical activity did not appear to be a factor.

"These findings," the researchers conclude, "have the important implication that increasing sleep time among those sleeping less than 7 hours per night may represent a novel approach to obesity prevention."

Recent studies show sleep deprivation has some potential in the treatment of depression. About 60% of patients, when sleep-deprived, show immediate recovery, with most relapsing the following night. The incidence of relapse can be decreased by combining sleep deprivation with medication . Incidentally, many tricyclic antidepressants happen to suppress REM sleep, providing additional evidence for a link between mood and sleep.

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