January 01, 2008
Lack Of Sleep Lowers Insulin Sensitivity

Getting your high quality deep sleep interrupted might put you at greater risk of insulin insensitive type 2 diabetes.

Suppression of slow-wave sleep in healthy young adults significantly decreases their ability to regulate blood-sugar levels and increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, report researchers at the University of Chicago Medical Center in the “Early Edition” of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, available online as soon as Dec. 31, 2007.

Deep sleep, also called “slow-wave sleep,” is thought to be the most restorative sleep stage, but its significance for physical well-being has not been demonstrated. This study found that after only three nights of selective slow-wave sleep suppression, young healthy subjects became less sensitive to insulin. Although they needed more insulin to dispose of the same amount of glucose, their insulin secretion did not increase to compensate for the reduced sensitivity, resulting in reduced tolerance to glucose and increased risk for type 2 diabetes. The decrease in insulin sensitivity was comparable to that caused by gaining 20 to 30 pounds.

Previous studies have demonstrated that reduced sleep quantity can impair glucose metabolism and appetite regulation resulting in increased risk of obesity and diabetes. This current study provides the first evidence linking poor sleep quality to increased diabetes risk.

"These findings demonstrate a clear role for slow-wave sleep in maintaining normal glucose control," said the study's lead author, Esra Tasali, MD, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Chicago Medical Center. "A profound decrease in slow-wave sleep had an immediate and significant adverse effect on insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance."

Get your sleep or lose control of your glucose. You have a decision to make. Don't be a chump. Stay in control.

We get less deep sleep as we get older. That decay in sleep quality might contribute to the rise in the incidence of type 2 diabetes as we age.

“Since reduced amounts of deep sleep are typical of aging and of common obesity-related sleep disorders, such as obstructive sleep apnea these results suggest that strategies to improve sleep quality, as well as quantity, may help to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes in populations at risk,” said Eve Van Cauter, PhD, professor of medicine at the University of Chicago and senior author of the study.

So many processes of aging create a vicious cycle. Your sleep quality deteriorates. Then your glucose levels go to high. That accelerates your aging and that makes your sleep quality even worse. The cycle repeats. We need rejuvenation therapies that will break this vicious cycle. We need to stop the downward spiral.

Share |      Randall Parker, 2008 January 01 10:41 PM  Aging Lifestyle Studies

John Doe said at May 15, 2011 10:20 AM:

Sleep quality is very important and to few people know it, I found an article that could also contribue to this one.

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