Catching up on sleep on weekend may help cut diabetes risk

Aug. 29, 2013 at 11:13 PM
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LOS ANGELES, Aug. 29 (UPI) -- For many U.S. adults, sleep of 6 hours a night may increase their risk of diabetes -- not because of weight gain, but insulin resistance, researchers say.

Peter Liu of the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute said getting enough sleep each day might do a lot to reduce the risk of diabetes.

Liu and colleagues at the University of Sydney in Australia checked insulin sensitivity – the body's ability to clear blood sugar from the bloodstream – in 19 non-diabetic men who got about 6 hours of sleep a night during the workweek, but 10 hours on weekend nights.

"By extending sleep to 10 hours a night versus 6 hours a night over just three days, we were able to improve insulin sensitivity, which is a marker of diabetes," Liu said in a statement.

Liu said findings suggest people should get enough sleep regularly -- not just on weekends.

The study was presented at an Endocrine Society meeting.

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