While it is commonly believed that a poor diet, lack of exercise as well as obesity are some reasons that can lead to diabetes. few people realise that lack of sleep (less than roughly seven hours) can also increase your chances of getting diabetes. Read on to know more about the surprising connection between poor sleep and diabetes.
Sleep follows a cyclical pattern, known as the Sleep Architecture. The pattern it follows is of alternating REM (Rapid Eye Movement) and NREM (Non Rapid Eye Movement) throughout a typical night, repeating every 90 minutes. NREM is 75% of our sleep time and REM is the deepest stage and the most restorative for the body.
Sleep is a restorative activity that affects many metabolic and hormonal processes. It helps the body 'recharge' itself every night, running essential processes and contributing to a healthy immune system. It also balances our appetites by regulating levels for the hunger hormones - ghrelin and leptin.
When sleep is inadequate, we feel the need to eat more leading to weight gain. It also plays a major role in maintaining insulin sensitivity and controlling blood sugar levels.
To know diabetes, let us understand blood glucose or blood sugar. It is derived from the food we eat and provides us energy. This conversion from food to energy is facilitated by a hormone called Insulin, produced by the pancreas. When the body cannot make or utilize adequate levels of insulin, glucose stays in the blood and cannot reach the cells. This is when diabetes happens.
Now that we understand the role of sleep and what happens in diabetes, the link is not difficult to imagine. Sleep deprivation issues build slowly and can be challenging to break once it becomes a pattern.
Here are 4 ways how lack of sleep can increase your likelihood of getting diabetes: