Sleep curbs obesity gene
Seattle, WA, United States (AHN) – Individuals who are genetically predisposed to be overweight might be able to curb that tendency with sleep.
That is according to a study from the University of Washington Sleep Center.
Researchers came to the conclusion after analyzing the sleep habits and body weights of 1,088 pairs of twins. They found that people who get at least nine hours of sleep per night have more control over their weight through their behavior than people who sleep less.
Getting adequate sleep, the study authors noted, appears to dampen genetic risk and allows the influence of diet, exercise and other controllable lifestyle factors to “surface.”
The less a person sleeps, the research found, the more important genetic factors are to how much that person weighs. The longer a person sleeps, the greater the influence of environmental factors such as meal consumption and timing.
Prior research has found that too little sleep is associated with a host of health-related problems, in addition to weight gain.
Sleep deprivation stresses the body and that stress may help to explain the relationship between sleep and gene expression seen in the study.
The finding are published in the journal Sleep.