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A study by the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute has revealed that sleeping more on the weekends may reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, a finding that could help individuals enjoy greater health and less susceptibility to chronic medical issues.
For those who are concerned that they may be vulnerable to diabetes, cholesterol testing can provide conclusive results and give people a more accurate glimpse of their overall health.
According to researchers, sleep can have a tremendous impact on the body's ability to remove sugar from the bloodstream. By enjoying better quality sleep, people may be able to enhance their sensitivity to insulin, HealthDay News reported.
"Our study found extending the hours of sleep can improve the body's use of insulin, thereby reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes in adult men," Peter Liu, M.D., a researcher at the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute. "Reducing the incidence of this chronic illness is critical for a nation where diabetes affects nearly 26 million people and costs an estimated $174 billion annually."
Less than 20 men with no history of diabetes were recruited for the study, most of whom were 29 years old on average. Researchers noted that the men routinely slept little more than six hours each night, but caught up on their sleep during the weekends, where they typically stayed in bed for up to two and a half hours longer than usual.
The participants were assigned different sleep schedules over the duration of the study - alternating between six and 10 hours per night. Those who enjoyed three consecutive nights of 10 hours of rest had better insulin sensitivity than those who did not sleep for 10 hours routinely, the news source reported.
The findings will be released on June 18 at the Endocrine Society's annual meeting in San Francisco, Calif. They shed new light on the potential for lifestyle factors like lack of sleep to determine the development of major conditions like Type 2 diabetes.
Other ways to reduce the likelihood of Type 2 diabetes include taking cholesterol tests regularly, exercising, eating right and watching one's weight, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
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