Sleep Disorders

People With Sleep Apnea More Prone To Get Hurt At Work



People who suffer from difficulty breathing during sleep are in danger of becoming injured on the job, new research suggests. According to the results of a study published in Thorax, people with sleep apnea are at great risk for occupational injuries and decreased concentration. This startling study tells us that lack of sleep caused by breathing problems is a health concern that should not be treated as a trivial issue.

Canadian scientists made the connection. Najib Ayas from the Department of Medicine at University British Columbia, led a research team which sought to ascertain whether people suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) were more likely to suffer from occupational injury (OI).

To find the answer, Ayas et al recruited 1236 patients from the University of British Columbia Hospital Sleep Laboratory whom were believed to be suffering from OSA between May 2003 to July 2011.

The research team had information about the types and rates of occupational injuries of the patients during the five years prior to undergoing polysomnography, a special sleep test.

Ayas et al discovered that sleep apnea patients were twice as likely to suffer at least one occupational injury than patients who did not suffer from sleep apnea. When the team investigated further, they learned that OSA patients were three times more likely to suffer from an injury that is more likely to be tied to lack of paying attention (e.g. commercial motor vehicle crash or fall).

These results tell us something about the problems associated with lack of sleep.

Obstructive sleep apnea is disorder wherein some physical object prevents the person from breathing. The disorder is so common that the National Institutes of Health estimate that every 4 out of 100 middle-aged men and every 2 out of every 100 middle-aged women suffer from OSA with symptoms.

People over age 45 years are more likely to develop OSA. Other health issues that increase the chances of developing OSA include:

  • obesity
  • diabetes
  • decreased muscle tone
  • enlarged tonsils or tongue
  • small jaw
  • small soft palate

According to the NIH, symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea include the following:

  • frequent urination
  • night sweats
  • suddenly waking up, often times with a racing heartbeat and shortness of breath
  • dry mouth when waking up
  • headaches in the morning
  • exhaustion during the day
  • difficulty concentrating

Getting back to the current study, Ayas et al found that OSA patients were nearly three times more likely to become involved in accidents involving a lack of vigilance.

If you don't get sufficient sleep, you're less likely to pay attention to what's going on around you. But it's also possible that you won't even hear danger approaching.

Interestingly, some years ago Taiwanese scientists noted an association between sudden deafness and sleep apnea. In that study, researchers discovered that men who experienced sudden hearing loss were more likely to suffer from sleep apnea than healthy men.

If OSA patients happen to suffer from impaired hearing, it may increase the likelihood that they will become involved in work related accidents.

Sleep apnea is also associated with obesity which itself is often associated with diabetes.

Lack of sleep can lead to insulin resistance. When this occurs, cells will ignore signals take up sugar, which will eventually cause blood sugar levels to rise. Elevated blood sugar levels can trigger the onset of type 2 diabetes. High blood sugar causes cellular metabolism to slow down (the sugar isn't getting into the cells to be used for energy) thereby causing weight gain.

At this point in the article, you now know that OSA is a physical obstruction of the airways. Now, think about something. Excess fat weighing down on the windpipe will cause breathing problems. I hope that you can see the connection.

Obstructive sleep apnea also increases risk of hypertension, heart disease, stroke and even depression.

NIH says numerous options are available for the treatment of OSA including mouth guards, surgery as well as special machines that facilitate sleep. But the first treatment they suggest is weight loss.

Considering the seriousness of OSA, is this a problem to be ignored?


But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. "Do not fear what they fear ; do not be frightened." 1 Peter 3:14

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Article Reference

Hirsch Allen AJ, Park JE, Daniele PR, Fleetham J, Ryan CF, & Ayas NT (2016). Obstructive sleep apnoea and frequency of occupational injury. Thorax PMID: 26980010

Obstructive sleep apnea: Overview - National Library of Medicine - PubMed Health

Get Some Sleep!

Scientists Tie Sudden Deafness To Sleep Apnea

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand In Hand Part 1


"People With Sleep Apnea More Prone To Get Hurt At Work" copyright © 2016 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.


Careful With That Night Light ! Bright Lights At Night May Cause You To Gain Weight



Keeping the lights on at night may add inches to your waist, new evidence suggests. According to a study published in the International Journal of Obesity, people who use night lights tend to be heavier than people who aren't exposed to artificial light during bedtime. Surprised? Brace yourselves, you're about to learn something about how light affects weight.

For some time, biologists have known that artificial light-at-night (ALAN) can cause the body's internal clocks to go haywire. Melatonin, the sleep hormone, is at its highest levels when you are sleeping; darkness stimulates melatonin production. But ALAN causes the body to suppress melatonin production which can cause adverse physiological changes resulting in weight gain.

Research scientists Rybnikova, Haim and Portnov utilized this knowledge to identify and measure how strong the associations between ALAN and country-wide overweight and obesity rates happen to be.

To find out, they analyzed recent satellite images of night lights from the US Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP).

Controlling for per capita GDP, level of urbanization, birth rate, food consumption and regional differences, Rybnikova et al hoped the satellite images would help them learn more about this problem.

They learned that ALAN along with other factors explained 70 % of the observed variations in the prevalence of obesity and overweight in more than eighty observed countries. In other words, satellite images helped confirm what scientists had come to know long ago - artificial light at night makes people fat.

We know that light affects human mood and reproduction. Animal models show a relationship between light at night and accelerated aging and cancer. Now data from Rybnikova et al tells us that artificial light at night can stimulate weight gain.

Rybnikova et al pointed out that the nearly 2.5 billion people meet the World Health Organization (WHO) definition of overweight and obese, and that the problem is rapidly on track to become a global pandemic. What can be done to reverse this trend?


Your Third Eye Is Open Even When You're Sleeping

People maybe surprised to know that we have been created with a "third eye". God created us with two external eyes and another photosensitive organ deep within the brain. This light sensing organ is the pineal gland and it produces the melatonin that helps us sleep at night.

Even after we close our external eyes, the pineal gland is able to sense light - whether that light be natural or artificial. When the organ detects light, it won't produce melatonin.

Eventually the pineal gland will become confused, prolonged exposure to light stimuli (artificial in this case) will cause the organ to think that the body should remain awake. As a result, the pineal gland will erroneously decrease melatonin production and throw the natural day/night rhythm out of whack.

A method that could reverse the global obesity trend may simply be turning off every artificial light source in the bedroom before going to sleep at night. Since the pineal gland detects light, keeping the room dark during sleep time may prevent the gland from suppressing melatonin production thereby possibly preventing eventual weight gain.

Regardless of whether people accept the mounting evidence linking circadian rhythm to health, if steps are not taken to curtail epidemic obesity, our planet may be dealing with the health consequences e.g. type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and arthritic joint pain for many decades to come.


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Article References

Rybnikova NA, Haim A, & Portnov BA (2016). Does artificial light-at-night exposure contribute to the worldwide obesity pandemic? International journal of obesity (2005) PMID: 26795746

Vinogradova IA, Anisimov VN, Bukalev AV, Ilyukha VA, Khizhkin EA, Lotosh TA, Semenchenko AV, & Zabezhinski MA (2010). Circadian disruption induced by light-at-night accelerates aging and promotes tumorigenesis in young but not in old rats. Aging, 2 (2), 82-92 PMID: 20354269


"Careful With That Night Light ! Bright Lights At Night May Cause You To Gain Weight" copyright © 2016 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.


Are you at Risk for Type-2 Diabetes? If So, What Can You Do About It?


James K. Robinson

It's the American way of life

The United States Department of Health's Weight-control Information Network, ironically that's WIN for short, and other health authorities, report that more than two-thirds of adults in the United States are either overweight or obese, with more than one-third obese for sure. Our population is unhealthy and it is getting worse.

And how about you?

If you are overweight, now reaching age 40 years or older and follow a diet that includes all the wrong foods -- sugary, sweet foods and beverages and too much saturated fatty food -- then it does not take a fortune teller or a crystal ball to predict that your future includes the likelihood of developing type-2 diabetes, a disease defined by higher than normal blood sugars.

And if you don't know anything about diabetes, be warned, left untreated it's a killer, and even with treatment, the quality of life is much impaired unless the condition can really be brought under tight control - there is no cure, life will never be the same again.

What causes type-2 diabetes is uncertain, there may be heredity or other unknown factors involved but what is known is that there is a definite association and link to being overweight or obese. And there is also a pre-diabetic condition that predisposes those diagnosed as such to the same complications of heart disease, stroke and other typical diabetic complications. And pre-diabetes often leads to the full type-2 diabetes anyway unless treated and reversed.

Risk factors

At the top of WIN's list of risk factors related to being overweight and obese is type-2 diabetes, the rest of the WIN's risk factors are shown below:


  • type 2 diabetes
  • coronary heart disease
  • high LDL ("bad") cholesterol
  • stroke
  • hypertension
  • nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
  • gallbladder disease
  • osteoarthritis (degeneration of cartilage and bone of joints)
  • sleep apnea and other breathing problems
  • some forms of cancer (breast, colorectal, endometrial, and kidney)
  • complications of pregnancy
  • menstrual irregularities

Those are just some of the alarming complications and to that list, especially related to type-2 diabetes, can be added such serious conditions as kidney disease and kidney failure, eye disease and blindness, gangrene and lower limb amputations.

The foregoing is the scary stuff but what can be done?

See a doctor

Serious conditions such are described above need that attention of a doctor and health support team to direct treatment and provide qualified medical and dietary advice.

But here is some advice given by the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse (NDIC)

The NDIC states that a lot can be done to lower the chances of developing diabetes. It is necessary to exercise regularly, reduce fat and calorie intake, and lose some weight in order to help reduce the risk of developing type-2 diabetes. And in doing so it can also help achieve a lowering of blood pressure and cholesterol levels, necessary for better health.

It is often said that "You are what you eat", and certainly, what you eat has a big impact on health. Body weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol can be controlled by making wise food choices.

The goals for an overweight person are to:



  • Reach and maintain a reasonable body weight, a Body Mass Index (BMI) of no greater than 25. Body mass index (BMI) is a measure of body weight in relation to height.
  • Make wise food choices most of the time, avoid high glycemic index foods where possible. The Glycemic Index numerically ranks food items according to the speed in which they are reduced by the body's digestive system to the simple sugar called glucose. The higher the ranking, the faster glucose enters the bloodstream - and that causes the higher than normal blood sugars that are characteristic of type-2 diabetes.
  • Be physically active every day, subject to physical condition, age, health and infirmities.


It is not easy to make big changes to lifestyle but it is really worthwhile and rewarding to do so.

As a diabetic myself I face the problems and risks listed here. For more information on many diabetes topics please visit Normal Blood Sugars & Diabetes and for diabetic menu planning suggestions: Diabetic Menu Guide.

The Pitfalls Of Going To Sleep Late At Night



Sleep journal recently published the results of an alarming study which found that teens who go to bed late at night tend to have higher body mass. I wasn't surprised by the findings, there is already a mounting body of scientific research linking lack of sleep to obesity. But this most recent report advises this could be a potential target for weight management for young people as they transition into adulthood, which got me to thinking about the many ways that lack of sleep damages the human body. Thus I've decided to make the dangers of sleep deprivation the focus of today's article.

Sleep is a natural biological function. God created sleep so that the human body would repair cellular damage, conserve energy and promote mental calm. Unfortunately, people have little respect for its importance. We spend an increasing number of hours devoted to activities that could often be postponed until the next day. As a result, efficiency and productivity suffer. Even worse, sleep deprivation has an adverse effect on hormone balance which then leads to drastic changes in mood, cardiovascular health, weight management, intellect and physical energy.

Hormones are chemicals that tell our cells what to do. Cells use them all the time to talk to themselves, their close neighbors and even cells in far away parts of the body. And, as you are about to see, when cells start to ignore the messages that each of them is sending, or send out the wrong messages - as a result of the body not getting enough sleep at night -  the results can be downright fatal.


Sleep Deprivation Makes You Hungry

Have you ever been so sleepy, that you felt really hungry the next day? Most people do. The reason is because the lack of sleep has thrown your appetite for a loop. Scientists have found a relationship between lack of sleep and increase in the hormone ghrelin and a corresponding decrease in leptin. Ghrelin stimulates your appetite whereas leptin is the hormone that tells you that you're full so you should stop eating.

When you don't get enough sleep at night, your body will produce more of the hungry hormone and less of the fullness hormone, so the next day you have a craving for sweet foods. If you give into the urge to eat, and continue going with less sleep at night, eventually it will cause you to gain weight, develop type 2 diabetes or both.


Sleep Deprivation Can Cause You To Develop Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is characterized by an inability to produce insulin or use it effectively. Insulin is a hormone the body produces in response to the presence of sugar in the bloodstream. When the blood has a large amount of sugar circulating in it, the body sends a message to the pancreas. This organ plays an important role in digestion. When the pancreas gets the signal that sugar levels in the blood are up, it produces insulin.

Insulin acts like a key that opens the doors of your cells to allow the sugar to get in and be used for energy. But if the cells become unresponsive to insulin - a condition medical science defines as insulin resistance - they will ignore the sugar, thus allowing it to accumulate in the bloodstream.  Eventually this leads to pre-diabetes, and if left unchecked, will balloon into full blown type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is a potential killer. It can lead to blindness, amputations, strokes and premature death.

The World Health Organization estimated that 347 million people around the world suffered from type 2 diabetes.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that diabetes is on the rise. Even more alarming, 79 million Americans are pre-diabetic but worst of all is that 70.9 million of these people don't even realize they have pre-diabetes.

Research shows that people who work long hours are at greater risk for diabetes than people who get a good night's rest. Have you ever wondered why? Well, now you know!


Sleep Deprivation Can Give You A Heart Attack

Diabetes and obesity are related. An important study found that overweight and obese teens were at increased risk for pre-diabetes, unhealthy levels of bad cholesterol and cardiovascular disease. Cardiovascular disease is an umbrella encompassing high blood pressure, hypertension and high cholesterol. These problems overwork the heart; if left untreated the result could be a heart attack.

The research team who conducted the study expressed concern because many of these obese and overweight teens will mature to obese and overweight adults, meaning the risk of heart attacks follow them for the rest of their lives.

Considering the sobering fact that obesity in America is on the rise, this is a very serious problem indeed.


Sleep Deprivation Can Make Your Muscles Weak

A recent study found that people who don't get much sleep at night are more likely to suffer from loss of muscle. The actual condition is termed sarcopenia; Korean scientists found sleep deprivation is linked to muscle loss, diabetes and metabolic syndrome (heart disease, diabetes and obesity).

Notice how sleep loss is linked to obesity and muscle loss. How eager are you to exercise when you're worn out from lack of sleep? After a while, lack of exercise will cause you to lose muscle; when you combine that with an ongoing case of the munchies it's no longer a mystery as to why you've become flabby and physically weak!


Sleep Deprivation Can Make You Mean and Cranky

The University of Arkansas found a relationship between anger and lack of sleep. They surveyed female college students who reported that they tended to develop feelings of aggression, revenge planning and stewing of angry thoughts if they went without sleep for too long.

No doubt you've heard a cranky person described as someone who "got up on the wrong side of the bed". That old saying seems to be very accurate when you think about the University of Arkansas study.

And if lack of sleep isn't already doing enough to make a student's life miserable, it can also have a bad effect on academic performance.


Sleep Deprivation Can Make You Become A Lousy Student

You would think that staying up late would make you a better student, but research says otherwise. In fact, high school and college students who stay up late at night often turn out to be poor students in college.

On the other hand, students who got a healthy amount of sleep often had higher grade point averages (GPAs), thus making them better students academically.

Of course, many young people are staying up late to watch television or play video games. Although it may appear that they're enjoying themselves, the outcome of such physical inactivity and lack of sleep isn't pretty.

In a groundbreaking study of nearly 8,000 children and adolescents, scientists from Harvard Medical School report that for every extra hour young people stayed up late, these children and teens gained body weight.

Should people fail to grow out of the habit of staying up past their bedtime, many will continue to pay the price well into their older years.


Sleep Deprivation Can Harm Your Brain When You Get Older

Scientists at Oxford University studied the brains of people who sleep poorly at night. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed that the brains of people who didn't get much sleep at night were shrinking - particularly in men and women over age 60. Yes, you read that correctly. The human brain tends to shrink when it doesn't get a sufficient amount of sleep.

It doesn't happen overnight (pun intended), but if you make a habit of putting off sleep after a while, it will catch up with you.

By now you should be coming to the realization that sleep is a very essential function, a function your body relies on to remain healthy. Although, there are circumstances that require us to postpone sleep, it's not something that should be encouraged long term. The consequences of ignoring your body might be terribly unpleasant.


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Article References

Asarnow LD, McGlinchey E, & Harvey AG (2015). Evidence for a Possible Link between Bedtime and Change in Body Mass Index. Sleep, 38 (10), 1523-7 PMID: 26194568

Global Obesity Is On The Rise

Diabetes Now Tops 347 Million People Worldwide, International Research Study Finds

Diabetes Hits America Hard: American Diabetes Is On The Rise

Diabetes Harms The Aging Brain

Millions Of Americans Don't Even Know They Are Prediabetic: CDC

Sleep Deprivation Could Shrink Your Brain

Get Some Sleep!

If You Don't Go To Sleep It Could Make You Sick

Sleepy College Students Blame Others When Things Go Wrong

Good Sleep Hygiene Can Improve Your Academic Performance, Research Study Finds

American Teens Are At Risk For Cardiovascular Disease

Watching Too Much TV Could Make Your Kids Fat

Long Work Hours Increase Diabetes Risk

CDC Reports Decline In Eye Problems Among Diabetics In America


"The Pitfalls Of Going To Sleep Late At Night" copyright © 2015 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.


Melatonin, Sleep Enhancement, And ADHD

Melatonin, Sleep Enhancement, And ADHD

Submitted by: Anthony Kane, MD

Melatonin is a natural hormone, which is produced and secreted by the pineal gland. Melatonin plays an important role in the regulation of many hormones in the body. Among its key roles, melatonin controls the body's circadian rhythm, an internal 24-hour time-keeping system that controls when we fall asleep and when we wake up.

Melatonin is also a very powerful antioxidant. In one study, melatonin was 60 times more effective than Vitamin C or water-soluble Vitamin E in protecting DNA from damage. Preliminary evidence suggests that it may help strengthen the immune system.

There are numerous claims and theories concerning all the things that melatonin may do and as a result it has become one of the popular life extension and life enhancing supplements that are currently available on the market today.

The most accepted function of Melatonin is it role in sleep regulation. Melatonin supplements help induce sleep in people with disrupted circadian rhythms. Melatonin is significantly more effective in decreasing the amount of time required to fall asleep, increasing the number of sleeping hours, and boosting daytime alertness.

Melatonin is purported to be one of those miracle substances that has a hand in everything. This may be due to the fact that during the height of the antioxidant craze, Melatonin was found to be a more powerful and more universal antioxidant than both vitamin C and vitamin E. Whatever the reason, Melatonin ostensibly plays a role in numerous health conditions.

Here is a partial list:

Eating Disorders
Breast Cancer
Prostate Cancer
Cancer-related Weight Loss
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Viral Encephalitis
Heart Disease

Since a lot of evidence for many of these claims is rather light and since I am not trying to sell you melatonin supplements, I am going to focus only on its role in sleep enhancement.

As many parents realize, drugs like Ritalin are not without side effects. One of the major complaints that parents have is that their children who take Ritalin can't fall asleep at night. Many parents report that their children, who may be only five or six years old, are wide awake until 11 pm or later.

Melatonin may be able to help these children. Since it is the primary chemical in the body that helps to induce sleep, children who suffer from insomnia often find that Melatonin restores their normal sleep cycle and helps them to be more awake and alert during the day.

How to Take It
There are currently no guidelines as to how to take Melatonin. Sensitivity to Melatonin is an individual thing and doses that are ineffective in one person may be too much for someone else.

The best approach for any condition is to begin with very low doses and slowly add more until you get the effect that you are seeking.

In children, it is best to start with a dose of about 0.3 mg/day or less. Although current research suggests that even doses as high as 10 mg are perfectly safe, it is best to proceed with caution.

In adults, 3 mg is usually a safe starting dose and you can increase it or decrease it as you see fit.

Melatonin is readily available in most health food stores in the United States and it is very cheap. In Europe it is a controlled substance. Most Europeans who wish to use Melatonin find it cheaper and easier to have it shipped from the US.

Adverse Effects
Melatonin is one of the least toxic substances known. In one extensive clinical trial, a high dose of 75 milligrams of melatonin per day was given to 1400 women in the Netherlands for up to four years with no ill effects.

The only consistent side effect of high doses has been drowsiness and a slower reaction time.

Other common complaints include:

Vivid dreams or nightmares
Stomach cramps
Decreased libido
Breast enlargement in men
Decreased sperm count.

These side effects were in healthy people. We also don't know how melatonin may affect people suffering from disease.

Possible Drug Interactions
Melatonin may interact or interfere with other drugs.

These include:

Antidepressant Medications
Antipsychotic Medications: many of these medications are now being used in treating children with ADHD and Bipolar disorder
Blood Pressure Medications
Blood-thinning Medications, Anticoagulants
Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
Steroids and Immunosuppressant Medications

If your child is taking any of these things, you should consult with his doctor before giving Melatonin.

Also, caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol can all diminish levels of melatonin in the body while cocaine and amphetamines may increase melatonin production.

Often children with ADHD have a great deal of difficulty falling asleep. This can be due to the medications that they are taking or just be one component in the spectrum of their problems. When used properly, melatonin may be a safe and effective way to handle sleep problems in ADHD children.

Anthony Kane, MD
ADD ADHD Advances

About the Author: Anthony Kane, MD is a physician and international lecturer. To get step-by-step help with your ADHD/ODD child, including behavior and treatment advice, come to There you will find help, information, and lots of resources. Get Oppositional Defiant Disorder help at

Permanent Link:

If You Don't Go To Sleep It Could Make You Sick



Staying up past your bed time could be harmful to your body, research suggests.

According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, Korean researchers have learned that staying up late increases risk for diabetes, sarcopenia and other health problems.

Their study should serve as a warning that we should get as much healthy sleep as possible.

Korean researchers sought to learn whether staying up late had any effect on the body composition and metabolic health.

In order to find the answer, the research team recruited 1620 middle-aged men and women from the Korean Genome and Epidemiology Study.

The volunteers were given the Morningness-Eveningness questionnaire which provided scientists with vital information about the participants chronometry sleep habits i.e. tendency to sleep at a particular time each night.

Additionally the researchers analyzed the participants' glucose levels, body composition and visceral obesity so as to provide associations between chronometry and diabetes, sarcopenia (muscle loss), and metabolic disorders.


Poor Sleep Habits Make You Prone To Health Problems

Although the majority of the volunteers (64.5 %) couldn't be classified as either morning or evening, 29% were classified as morning chronotype and 5 % as evening chronotype.

Interestingly, compared to morning chronotype, evening chronotype was highly associated with sarcopenia, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.

When researchers compared gender, differences emerged.

For men, evening chronotype was associated with sarcopenia and diabetes.

In women, evening chronotype was only associated with metabolic syndrome.

The research team concluded that circadian rhythm (the day night cycle) is very important to metabolic regulation.

Basically, the Korean research study demonstrated that lack of sleep tends to throw human metabolism out of whack.

Generally speaking, humans sleep when at night and are active during the day. But people are inventing ways to squeeze as much as they can into their waking hours, even at the expense of their health.

Metabolic syndrome is an umbrella for a host of health problems including obesity, diabetes, and heart disease, and the researchers were wise to look at it in terms of sleep loss.

It doesn't come as any surprise to me that the folks who spent less time sleeping were at greater risk for diabetes, metabolic syndrome and sarcopenia.

Some years ago, results from the Wisconsin Sleep Cohort Study tells us that people who get less than five hours of sleep per night have higher levels of ghrelin (a hunger hormone) and lower levels of leptin (a hormone that keeps us from feeling hungry).

University of Chicago researchers also showed that sleep deprivation increases our desire to eat.

In other words, people who don't get enough sleep tend to feel hungry.

Have you ever felt the compulsion to eat junk food if you're really sleepy, or raid the refrigerator for snacks if you stay up into the wee hours of the night? If so, it's very likely caused by imbalances in the hormones that regulate hunger and fullness, an imbalance brought about by lack of sleep.

People who don't get enough sleep often crave sugary foods; if they keep this up long term, it increases their chances for developing diabetes, and weight gain.

Sarcopenia is muscle loss. Really, if you think about it, are you enthusiastic about exercise when you're sleepy? Likely not. And lack of exercise is one of the most common ways to lose muscle mass. So again, I hope that you see why it's so important to get a good night's sleep.

Even though the Korean study looked at metabolic effects of sleep deprivation, I want to point out that people don't think clearly when they're sleepy.

In fact, research shows that people who don't get enough sleep, tend to do poorly in school, and more likely to blame others for their shortcomings.

Finally, lack of sleep is the culprit behind a lot of auto accidents.

So why put yourself through all of these hassles if you don't need to? When you start to sleepy, do yourself a favor and just get some sleep.


25 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Matthew 6:25-26

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Article References

Yu JH, Yun CH, Ahn JH, Suh S, Cho HJ, Lee SK, Yoo HJ, Seo JA, Kim SG, Choi KM, Baik SH, Choi DS, Shin C, & Kim NH (2015). Evening chronotype is associated with metabolic disorders and body composition in middle-aged adults. The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism, 100 (4), 1494-502 PMID: 25831477

Chronotype - wikipedia

Get Some Sleep!

Sleepy College Students Blame Others When Things Go Wrong

Good Sleep Hygiene Can Improve Your Academic Performance, Research Study Finds


"If You Don't Go To Sleep It Could Make You Sick" copyright © 2015 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.



Sleep Deprivation Could Shrink Your Brain



Catch some zzzzs if you want to keep your brain from shrinking, research suggests. According to a report published in Neurology, sleep deprivation reduces the size of your brain. Chalk up this study as further evidence that getting a good night's sleep is good for your health. 

British and Norwegian scientists made the discovery in a study designed to learn how sleep quality affects the size of the brain.

They began by selecting 147 men and women whom were given the Pittsuburg Sleep Quality iIndex which is questionnaire about sleep habits as well as a magnetic resonance imaging scan (MRI). Then they came back three and a half years later and gave the patients another MRI scan.

What the team found out about sleep deprivation was very startling indeed.


Poor Sleep Could Shrink Your Brain

When Oxford University researcher Claire Sexton and her colleagues analyzed scans of the patients' brains they found that many regions of the brain were adversely affected by poor sleep.

In fact, the volume of the right frontal cortex - the brain region involved in movement - was smaller in people who did not have high quality sleep. The research noted also noted shrinkage in the temporal, frontal and parietal areas of sleep deprived brains.

Interestingly brain atrophy and loss of volume was more common among men and women whom were over age 60 years of age but the results couldn't be explained in terms of blood pressure, body mass index or physical activity.

Sexton and her colleagues concluded that "Poor sleep quality may be a cause or a consequence of brain atrophy, and future studies examining the effect of interventions that improve sleep quality on rates of atrophy may hold key insights into the direction of this relationship."


The Human Body Needs Sleep

God created our bodies such that sleep is a vital part of our life cycle. Sleep is essential to the health and well-being of the body. Lack of sleep affects concentration and judgement.

Various studies have demonstrated that sleep deprivation makes people more susceptible to eating fattening foods, getting poor grades in school and changes in mood.

When the prophet Elijah was on the run from Jezebel and Ahab, he became so worried that he couldn't sleep and it affected his judgement. One of the first things God did for the man was to put him into a restful sleep so that his health would be restored. (1 Kings 19:4-14)

So, as you can see, everyone of us needs sleep.

Perhaps the British/Norwegian study will help convince folks to put off for tomorrow the things which can be done tomorrow and make sure to get a good sleep tonight.


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Article References

Sexton CE, Storsve AB, Walhovd KB, Johansen-Berg H, & Fjell AM (2014). Poor sleep quality is associated with increased cortical atrophy in community-dwelling adults. Neurology, 83 (11), 967-73 PMID: 25186857

Good Sleep Hygiene Can Improve Your Academic Performance, Research Study Finds

Sleepy College Students Blame Others When Things Go Wrong

Get Some Sleep!


"Sleep Deprivation Could Shrink Your Brain" copyright © 2014 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.


Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 3

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 3

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 3
By Roger Guzman, M.D.

Sleep and diabetes, part 3 is the last of the series on this issue. Good sleep pattern does not start as soon as you hit your pillow. Rather you have to develop some habits all day long to get a good night sleep. Go to sleep and wake up at the same time each day so the body will get used to the schedule. Stress and other issues may keep you awake but there are tips to follow to enjoy peaceful nights and good days:

1. Plan you breakfast menu the night before. Begin the day with an anti-fatigue breakfast that will wake you up. Perhaps, drink hot chocolate or coffee but only in the morning. Then have a cup of cereal that has at least five grams of fiber because studies have shown this will lower the feeling of fatigue by around 10%.

2. If you are still feeling lethargic, try this quick way to get rid of the tension and renew the energy. Put on mild pressure to the anti-fatigue points below the two somewhat bony ridges at the base of the skull until feeling a pulse. Or apply gentle pressure on the hollow above the eye where the eyebrow meets the bridge of the nose and this will restock the energy.

3. Exercise of moderate activity for 30 minutes every day will release chemicals in your brain that will energize you. If you are too busy, three 10-minute sessions of walking, biking or swimming will provide you enough of feel-good revitalization. Do the last one in the late afternoon but three hours before bedtime.

4. Keep the blood glucose level within target level. Here's a concoction that could rejuvenate you. Mix one pint of strawberries in a blender. Blend with two cups of cooled green tea. Sweeten to taste with Splenda if desired.

5. Cool down before bedtime. If you do not wind down, you will be staring at the ceiling for hours before going to sleep. Here are ways: Don't take alcohol, coffee and nicotine late during the day, work, pay the bills or watch TV before bedtime. Instead take a warm soothing bath and eat a light snack containing a bit of carbohydrates like crackers or cereal and tryptophan like milk or nuts.

Some experts say to remember the four "R'S" which are regularize, ritualize, relax and resist. Let us see what is involved in each one. Regularize the schedule for sleeping and waking. Ritualize the way to get ready to sleep like listening to music or reading a book. Relax to reduce the stress of the day and resist any behavior that prevents having a goodnight sleep.

Then there may be a problem with the mattress. It may be time to replace it if you wake up with pains and aches. Plan ahead before buying and for goodness sake, try it before making a purchase. Get the whole story. Some will not cover the warranty if you do not buy the box spring with the mattress. Buy them together because they are built to work together.

Last but not least, buy the perfect pillow that does not strain your neck but supports your head. Get a softer pillow if you sleep on your stomach, medium, if you sleep on your back and a firmer one if you sleep on your side. Don't economize in buying the mattress and pillow for you spend a third of your life using them especially if you have issues on sleep and diabetes.

Please visit these sites for more diabetes help:

Sleep and Diabetes - Part 1

Free Diabetes Alert

Brief Biography: Dr. Guzman worked for the Atlantic Health Corporation and was consultant to St. Joseph's Hospital, Sussex Mental Health Clinic, and St. Stephen Mental Health Clinic for many years. He was Director of Forensic Psychiatry at Centracare for ten years and published numerous articles in the Journal of the American College of Forensic Psychiatry and other medical magazines.

Article Source:,_M.D.

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 2

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 2

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 2
By Roger Guzman, M.D.

Sleep and diabetes are connected as shown in the growing evidence that sleep is a great controller of the use of energy, appetite and weight. It is not as blatant as the impact of diabetes on the blood sugar that can easily be seen and understood. Regardless, while it is true that we know eating healthy and moving more is crucial to diabetes care, so is the recent finding that sleep is just as important.

While asleep, the body produces an increased amount of the appetite suppressor called leptin and at the same time decreasing the appetite stimulant called grehlin. Researches have shown that people who sleep less hours than they need are more liable to be obese or overweight. They also prefer to eat foods that contain more calories and carbohydrates. In addition, they tend to eat more comfort foods.

As mentioned before, some hormones are released while asleep. They control the way the body uses energy. Studies have also shown that a definite rise and fall of the blood glucose levels seem to be connected to the sleep stage. There are two stages of sleep: the NREM which is acronym for non-rapid eye movement and the REM which if the person is very tired, the cycle becomes shorter.

Can you see how inadequate sleep equals high blood sugar? You see, people who are sleep-deprived are tired and so they will eat more to get energy somewhere else. This could mean eating foods that can make the blood sugar high. Eating right all day long can keep the blood sugar within target level which in turn aids in getting a goodnight sleep.

That also shows the link between weight gain and sleep. Some researches have shown that those who are sleep-deprived have a tendency to be heavier than those who get enough sleep. And we know that being obese or overweight is a diabetes risk factor.

So does this mean if you sleep less, you get diabetes? Let's see what a study found out. Volunteers were asked to stay in the lab for 14 days where diet, sleep activity and blood chemistry were monitored. Junk food was readily available and the participants were not allowed to exercise. The results showed that a healthy life style is not only a healthy diet and exercise but should include enough sleep as well.

Getting enough sleep is as important as what you eat. The diabetics especially have to be careful about getting adequate sleep. Getting off a routine can make them feel tired and less energetic. The more tired they are, there is more chance for the insulin deficiencies to kick in. That is why adequate sleep is as vital as a healthy diet and exercise for those with diabetes.

How much sleep do we need? Unfortunately, there is no formula for this. On the average, it should be 7.5 hours but since this is genetically determined, it varies anywhere from four hours to 10 or 11. Some experts say, if you use an alarm clock, then you are not getting enough sleep. Your brain should wake you up before the alarm does.

Hopefully, the article has convinced you of the importance of sleep in diabetes management. Part 3 will have tips to help you get adequate sleep which has been compared to the two lifestyle changes we already accept as crucial. As you found out, the number of hours of sleep we need depends on genetics but whatever it is, get enough of it as the link is clear between sleep and diabetes.

Please visit these sites for more diabetes help:

How to Manage Diabetes

Brief Biography: Dr. Guzman worked for the Atlantic Health Corporation and was consultant to St. Joseph's Hospital, Sussex Mental Health Clinic, and St. Stephen Mental Health Clinic for many years. He was Director of Forensic Psychiatry at Centracare for ten years and published numerous articles in the Journal of the American College of Forensic Psychiatry and other medical magazines.

Copyright � September 11, 2010 Roger Guzman, M.D. (Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand- Part 2) All Rights Reserved. You may copy and publish this article as long as the text, the author's name, the active links and this notice remain the same.

Article Source:,_M.D.

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 1

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 1

Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand - Part 1
By Roger Guzman, M.D.

Sleep and diabetes have a connection. When the blood sugar level is out of control, more than likely sleep is problematic as well. For one thing, high blood sugar will make the kidneys try to do away with it by urinating and this of course will not make one sleep well. There is also proof that inadequate sleep increases the risk to develop type 2 diabetes.

The director of the Minnesota Regional Sleep Disorders Center, Mark Mahowald, MD, said that the evidence shows that lack of adequate sleep could lead to pre-diabetic state. The body's response to sleep deprivation can look like resistance to insulin which is a sign of diabetes.

Healthy living requires a good night sleep. It rejuvenates the mind and relaxes the body. Not only that, good sleep is essential to diabetes health. Most adults need around eight hours of sleep with individual needs fluctuating between five and ten hours. The trouble is that researches have reported on people sleeping less than seven hours.

The new research report on the number of hours most people sleep shows some form of sleep deprivation. This not only makes one lethargic and cranky, but it can lead to more stress, lower productivity and poor concentration. The body of course suffers if not refueled by the adequate amount of sleep.

Chronic sleep deprivation interferes with social and work performance. It also increases the amount of sleep one needs. If lack of adequate sleep keeps going on, a concept called sleep debt is created. Much like the money debt, the body will demand a payment of some sort or the body further suffers.

The benefits of sleep cannot be denied. For one thing while one sleeps, the body consolidates the day's events and learning into memory. This helps improve understanding and processing of skills. The information is organized and stored in the brain by the concentrated firing of the neurons while asleep.

There is also increase in the blood flow to the muscles thus bringing the necessary nutrients while getting rid of waste. This helps with tissue repair and growth. It also improves the mood because insufficient sleep makes one less energetic and productive, impatient, moody, grumpier and irritable.

Now let us find some more links between sleep and diabetes. Lack of sufficient sleep will affect the metabolism. It can lead to the body storing extra carbohydrates which can result in weight gain. Longer sleep deprivation can cause greater heart rate variability thus affecting the cardiovascular health. It can also result in lower body temperature and immune system function.

Adequate amount of sleep helps protect one from the sniffles and flu. Research has shown that inadequate sleep lowers the body response to flu vaccine. In a study, volunteers were given the flu vaccine and those who were rested got the full flu antibodies while those who did not have adequate sleep produced only less than half of the flu antibodies. While asleep, the body produces more cytokines which aid the immune system battle all sorts of infections.

Lack of adequate sleep increases resistance to insulin. This of course increases the risk to develop diabetes. In fact one study of young men who were healthy and slept only four hours a night for six consecutive nights showed their blood sugar and insulin levels similar to those who were getting diabetes.

Now we all have an idea as to this connection that can affect the way we manage this condition in a positive way. We will continue this discussion in Part 2 where in addition, we will see how much sleep really is enough. This part at least gives us the connection between sleep and diabetes.

Please visit these sites for more diabetes help:

Diabetes Management

Brief Biography: Dr. Guzman worked for the Atlantic Health Corporation and was consultant to St. Joseph's Hospital, Sussex Mental Health Clinic, and St. Stephen Mental Health Clinic for many years. He was Director of Forensic Psychiatry at Centracare for ten years and published numerous articles in the Journal of the American College of Forensic Psychiatry and other medical magazines.

Copyright � August 27, 2010 Roger Guzman, M.D. (Sleep and Diabetes Often Go Hand in Hand- Part 1) All Rights Reserved. You may copy and publish this article as long as the text, the author's name, the active links and this notice remain the same.

Article Source:,_M.D.