Article 116. Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 2


Sleep and diabetes are connected as shown in the growing evidence that sleep is a great controller of the use of energy, appetite and weight. It is not as blatant as the impact of diabetes on the blood sugar that can easily be seen and understood. Regardless, while it is true that we know eating healthy and moving more is crucial to diabetes care, so is the recent finding that sleep is just as important.

While asleep, the body produces an increased amount of the appetite suppressor called leptin and at the same time decreasing the appetite stimulant called grehlin. Researches have shown that people who sleep less hours than they need are more liable to be obese or overweight. They also prefer to eat foods that contain more calories and carbohydrates. In addition, they tend to eat more comfort foods.

As mentioned before, some hormones are released while asleep. They control the way the body uses energy. Studies have also shown that a definite rise and fall of the blood glucose levels seem to be connected to the sleep stage. There are two stages of sleep: the NREM which is acronym for non-rapid eye movement and the REM which if the person is very tired, the cycle becomes shorter.

Can you see how inadequate sleep equals high blood sugar? You see, people who are sleep-deprived are tired and so they will eat more to get energy somewhere else. This could mean eating foods that can make the blood sugar high. Eating right all day long can keep the blood sugar within target level which in turn aids in getting a goodnight sleep.

That also shows the link between weight gain and sleep. Some researches have shown that those who are sleep deprived have a tendency to be heavier than those who get enough sleep. And we know that being obese or overweight is a diabetes risk factor. Here if you scroll down you may find the personalized pillows that may help you sleep.

So does this mean if you sleep less, you get diabetes? Let's see what a study found out. Volunteers were asked to stay in the lab for 14 days where diet, sleep activity and blood chemistry were monitored. Junk food was readily available and the participants were not allowed to exercise. The results showed that a healthy life style is not only a healthy diet and exercise but should include enough sleep as well.

Getting enough sleep is as important as what you eat. The diabetics especially have to be careful about getting adequate sleep. Getting off a routine can make them feel tired and less energetic. The more tired they are, there is more chance for the insulin deficiencies to kick in. That is why adequate sleep is as vital as diet for those with diabetes.

How much sleep do we need? Unfortunately, there is no formula for this. On the average, it should be 7.5 hours but since this is genetically determined, it varies anywhere from four hours to 10 or 11. Some experts say, if you use an alarm clock, then you are not getting enough sleep. Your brain should wake you up before the alarm does.

Hopefully, the article has convinced you of the importance of sleep in diabetes management. Part 3 will have tips to help you get adequate sleep which has been compared to the two lifestyle changes we already accept as crucial. As you found out, the number of hours of sleep we need depends on genetics but whatever it is, get enough of it as the link is clear between sleep and diabetes.

Alert: A study conducted in 2010 in Diabetes Care found that people who have sleep problems like having a difficult time falling asleep or staying asleep and those who sleep more than eight to nine hours have more risk of developing type 2 diabetes than those who sleep soundly.

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