The Latest in Fitness, Nutrition, Recipe and Lifestyle News

« Home |

New Research: Getting Only This Much Sleep Nightly Raises a Woman’s Diabetes Risk

Written by Molly Christian

Share to
Lifestyle Health

A recent study has lifted the covers on a major connection between sleep patterns and the onset of one of America's most common chronic illnesses.

With greater than 30 million diagnosed diabetes cases in the US, the disease is prevalent. So is our lack of healthy sleep, and it turns out the two may be very closely linked.

The importance of a good night’s sleep for maintaining mental clarity, emotional stability, and overall physical health is a well-established fact, repeatedly confirmed by scientific research. However, achieving the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep nightly often feels like a distant dream.

BREAKING: Diabetes Breakthrough Leaves Doctors Speechless - Try This Tonight

This challenge is at the heart of a recent Columbia University study published in the journal Diabetes Care in November 2023. The research specifically examines the impacts of sleep on health, focusing on its role in the risk of type 2 diabetes, particularly in women.

This is a significant finding, as the study suggests that how much you sleep is another critical element to consider in reducing the risk of this chronic metabolic condition.

A closer look at the study

The research centered on 38 healthy women between the ages of 20 and 75 years to gather intel on the unique sleep challenges science that has shown women face throughout our lives. The study participants, who had previously maintained a disciplined sleep schedule of at least seven hours per night, were asked to reduce their sleep by 90 minutes each night over six weeks.

The women’s adherence to these sleep schedules was tracked using wearable devices to ensure accuracy. Throughout the study, the researchers monitored health indicators such as insulin, glucose, and body fat levels, offering valuable insights into the interplay between sleep duration and overall metabolic health.


The findings

The results were eye-opening. Participants experienced a marked increase in fasting insulin levels, rising over 12% overall and by over 15% among premenopausal women—which the researchers state was all due to reduced sleep.

Fasting insulin levels are essential in assessing how effectively the body regulates blood sugar. Higher levels indicate that the body’s cells are less responsive to insulin. Additionally, insulin resistance—which often leads to type 2 diabetes—also saw a considerable increase, going up by nearly 15% overall and more than 20% in postmenopausal women.

Interestingly, this increase in insulin levels occurred without any associated weight gain, highlighting how sleep deprivation directly impacts metabolic health. Marie-Pierre St-Onge, PhD, lead researcher and associate professor of Nutritional Medicine at Columbia, emphasized in a press release that if such stress on the body’s insulin-producing cells continues over time, it could lead to type 2 diabetes. This is more evidence of the importance of adequate sleep in maintaining metabolic balance and preventing chronic health conditions.

How to get better sleep

TRENDING: Big Pharma In Outrage Over This Breakthrough Natural Painkiller

Here are some effective strategies to improve sleep quality and duration and curb your risk for type 2 from sleep experts:

  • Regular sleep schedule: Maintain the same sleep and wake times daily to enhance your body’s sleep-wake cycle.
  • Limit screen time: Turn off electronic devices at least an hour before bed to avoid the sleep-disrupting effects of blue light (along with any posts that can stir agitation).
  • Mind your diet: Steer clear of large meals, caffeine, and alcohol before bedtime. One metabolic scientist recommends a minimum of three hours between dinner and bed time.
  • Relaxation techniques: Engage in calming activities like reading, warm baths, or relaxation exercises such as deep breathing or meditation.
  • Physical activity: Regular exercise can improve your sleep, but avoid vigorous activity close to bedtime.
  • Manage worries: Address any concerns before bed by writing them down to clear your mind for sleep. (One of our editors drops mini notes listing her worries in a jar and prayers for them to be resolved. She says they’re often taken care of by the next day.)

Persistent sleep issues should be discussed with a doctor to identify and treat any underlying problems to help you get the better sleep you deserve.

Share to



Like Us on Facebook?