Men who sleep longer on average, or just less than seven hours a night are at greater risk of developing diabetes, researchers said.
“Even if you are otherwise healthy, too much or too little can sleep have adverse effects on your health, this study shows how important sleep is as in aspect of health:”Glucose metabolism,” says Femke Rutters of the VU University Medical Center, who led research.
Rutters and her team studied 788 healthy men and women between thirty and sixty years old, from nineteen European countries. They measured the number of hours that the participants slept each night. Their physical activity was monitored.
With advanced equipment was then tracked how well the body uses insulin. This affects glucose metabolism and provides information on how high the risk of diabetes.
Male subjects who slept on average about seven hours a night had a better glucose metabolism than men on average slept longer or shorter. Also, their blood sugar levels lower (healthier).
“At the shorter or longer sleeping men reacted, the cells in the body produce less insulin. This reduces the uptake of glucose, which increases the risk of developing diabetes,” said Rutters.
In women, this association was not found by the researchers. Why that is, is unclear. The research is published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.