Sleep Longer to Prevent Weight Gain
Deprivation of sleep results in deep obesogenic effects on metabolism and appetite.
Jean-Phillipe Chaput and his colleagues at the University of Ottawa conducted a study to evaluate the effect of sleep duration on obesity. This study was published in International Journal of Obesity.
Data from a 6-year longitudinal observational study was assessed. The respondents were adults between 18-64 years old.
Forty-three individuals having short sleep of less than 6 hours were grouped in two categories. Group one included 23 people who increased their sleeping hours to 'healthy' sleep duration of about 7-8 hours. And group two consisted of 20 people who continued their short sleep duration habit.
Identical baseline characteristics were noted in both groups. However, individuals continuing short sleeping hours had relative increase in their body mass index and fat mass over a six-year period in contrast to those short sleepers who increased their sleeping hours.
Chaput stressed that this longitudinal study data is the first of its kind suggesting that the risk of obesity or weight gain can be reduced significantly by increasing sleeping hours in individuals with short sleep duration.
Further clinical trials and sleep interventions are needed for short-sleepers with weight issues.
A significant point to note is that having long sleeping hours alone cannot check weight gain. Prevention from acquiring excess weight is more important.
Concluding, the experts said that a lower fat mass gain is reported by shifting from short sleeping pattern to a healthy sleeping pattern
J-P Chaput et al. Longer sleep duration associates with lower adiposity gain in adult short sleepers. International Journal of Obesity (2012) 36, 752-756.