Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Sleep Deprivation Linked to Weight Gain

Charlene Laino
Medscape Medical News 2006. © 2006 Medscape
May 24, 2006 (San Diego) — A new study presented here at the American Thoracic Society International Conference shows that middle-aged women who sleep 5 or fewer hours each night weigh an average of 2.5 kg more than those who sleep for at least 7 hours. "Sleep deprivation has important effects on a patient's health, so clinicians should really ask their patients about their sleep habits," said study presenter Sanjay Patel, MD, an assistant professor of medicine at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. "Getting a good's night sleep has already been shown to have effects on diabetes and heart disease and now we see it affects weight as well."Dr. Patel told Medscape that previous studies had already shown that women, men, and children who sleep less tend to weigh more than those who sleep more. But what had not been clear, he explained, is whether the loss of sleep caused the weight gain or vice versa. In addition to weighing more at baseline, the women who slept less tended to gain more weight over time, Dr. Patel reported. One of the most surprising findings, Dr. Patel said, was that the women who slept less actually ate less as well. .“The practicing physician really needs to stress to her patient that getting a good night’s sleep is not just a luxury,” Dr. Badr told Medscape. “It’s a mandatory way to improve your health.”ATS 2006 International Conference: Abstract C88. Presented May 23, 2006.Reviewed by Margaret Clark, RN, RRT-NPS

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