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Sleep Disorders and Glucose Metabolism: What's the Connection?

Sleep Disorders and Glucose Metabolism: What's the Connection?

Sleep disorders and glucose metabolism ©FXQuandro/

Twenty to 30 per cent of middle-aged Americans report sleeping less than 6 hours per night. The brevity is ascribed to voluntary and employment-related restrictions as well as to common sleep disorders such as insomnia and obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSA). The latter contribute to impaired sleep in more than 30% of adults.

Recently sleep has been causally related to regulation of glucose homeostasis and appetite control and sleep impairment is implicated in the rising prevalence of obesity and type 2 diabetes (T2DM). This brief overview highlights evidence for possible mechanisms underlying the impact of common sleep disorders on development of glucose intolerance, insulin resistance, and pancreatic endocrine dysfunction.   


Mechanisms of Sleep Disorders and Glucose Metabolism

► Sleep duration has shortened from >8 hours in the 1960s to ~ 6.5 hours per night in 2012; the result is that many people are chronically sleep deprived1,2

► Abnormal sleep has been linked to obesity, metabolic syndrome, T2DM, and impaired appetite control

► Sleep quality and quantity may have important effects on whole body metabolism

► The most prevalent sleep disturbances include short sleep duration, shift work disorder, and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)

Short Sleep Duration: Next page →


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