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Sleeping too long or too short can affect weight
Most people already know that too little sleep is not healthy for the body. Researchers have now found that both too much and too little sleep can increase the likelihood of people becoming overweight or obese.
The University of Glasgow scientists found in their current research that too much or too little sleep can increase the likelihood of people becoming overweight or even obese. The doctors released a press release on the results of their study. They were also published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Abnormal sleep can lead to weight gain in some people
In the study, the British experts found that abnormal sleep patterns increase the risk of becoming overweight when people are already genetically predisposed to obesity. This effect was independent of diet, health or socio-demographic factors, the authors explain. However, doctors at the University of Glasgow found no clear link between sleep duration and body weight in people with a low genetic risk of developing obesity.
Duration of bedtime and its effects examined
For their investigation, the researchers looked at the effects of sleeping too short, less than seven hours a night, and the effects of sleeping longer than nine hours. They also took into account the changed sleep times during shift work and so-called naps during the day, say the experts.
People with a high genetic risk of obesity should pay attention to normal bedtime
The results of this study show that people with a high genetic risk of obesity, short and long sleep times further increase the existing risk of being overweight compared to people who had a normal sleep duration of between seven and nine hours a night.
Long-sleeping subjects weighed about four kilograms more
Late sleepers who were at risk of becoming obese were around four kilograms heavier, the doctors explain. If such people regularly slept too short, they were on average two kilograms heavier compared to those with a similarly high genetic risk of obesity but a normal sleep duration.
Shift work and naps also affect weight
The results are based on data from almost 120,000 UK participants. The data from the subjects showed no general, obvious connection between sleep duration and body weight in people who had a low genetic risk for the development of obesity, the scientists explain. However, the study made it clear that shift work or a nap during the day can have a significant adverse effect on body weight if there was already an increased genetic risk of obesity, explains the author Dr. Jason Gill.
Some people are less affected by the negative effects
The overall impact of negative sleep characteristics on body weight in people with a low genetic risk of obesity is much less. Such people simply seem to be better able to cope better with the negative effects despite poor sleeping habits, the experts speculate.
Our sleep can have a significant impact on body weight
People with a high genetic risk of obesity generally seem to have to worry more about certain lifestyle factors in order to maintain a healthy body weight, explains author Dr. Carlos Celis from the University of Glasgow. The study results indicate that sleep is another important factor in maintaining a healthy body weight, which, in addition to our diet and physical activity, has a significant impact. (as)