The obesity epidemic may be a lot more complex than simply calories in vs. calories burned. A growing body of scientific research is adding weight to the hypothesis that the less time spent sleeping on a comfortable mattress, the higher the risk is of gaining pounds. One new study was released by the Institute of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Medicine at the University of Leeds.
The study took a look at 1,615 adults between the ages of 19 and 65. All study participants were residents of Britain. They kept records of how long they slept and what they ate. At the conclusion of the study, the collected data revealed that study participants who slept an average of nine hours each night had, on average, a waistline that was three centimeters smaller than the participants who reported sleeping an average of six hours per night.
The researchers also checked each of the participant’s blood pressure, blood glucose levels, thyroid function, and cholesterol levels, in addition to their weight and waist circumferences.
In an interview, the lead researcher, Dr. Laura Hardie, said, “Because we found that adults who reported sleeping less than their peers were more likely to be overweight or obese, our findings highlight the importance of getting enough sleep.” Dr. Hardie noted that individual sleep requirements vary, but most adults need an average of seven to nine hours each night.
The U.K. study is far from the only one to find a link between sleep habits and weight. Harvard School of Public Health reports that the Nurses’ Health Study evaluated about 60,000 women over the course of 16 years. The study participants were routinely asked questions about their weight and lifestyle habits, including sleep and diet. None of the participants were obese or otherwise unhealthy at the start of the study. By the time the study ended, the women who slept an average of five hours or fewer each night had a 15 percent higher risk of developing obesity compared to participants who slept at least seven hours each night.
Getting enough restorative sleep each night is crucial for so many aspects of your health. It helps you concentrate and do well at work or school. It stabilizes your mood, makes you less likely to develop depression and anxiety, and reduces your risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Clearly, sleep ought to be among any health-oriented person’s top three goals—right alongside balanced nutrition and regular exercise.
But if an uncomfortable mattress is keeping you up at night, it’s hard to do right by your health. At Mattress World Northwest in Portland, we’d like to introduce you to our affordable financing options, amazing sales, and everyday low prices that can connect you to the bed you need. We’ve got memory foam, latex, hybrid, and the newer generation of inner spring mattresses that are more comfortable and supportive than ever before. Visit a mattress store in the Portland, Oregon area today or give us a call at 503.713.6572.