A Good Night’s Rest Can Help Prevent Diabetes
Do you have difficulty sleeping at night?
Sleep deprivation has been shown to affect glucose metabolism. A recent study in the U.S. found that teens who slept seven hours a night increased their ability to use insulin by 9%, compared to teens who slept for six hours.
When you don’t get enough quality sleep, your body begins to produce cortisol, which leads to insulin resistance and increased levels of blood glucose—the root cause of prediabetes and diabetes.
It’s recommended that you get seven to nine hours of sleep each night. Though medical conditions like sleep apnea and insomnia can cause sleep loss, poor sleep habits are often the reason people don’t get enough quality sleep.
Here are a few tips for getting more shut-eye:
- Develop a routine. Get up and go to sleep at the same time every day, even on weekends. By developing a routine, your body will fall into a natural cycle of rest and wakefulness.
- Don’t eat or drink before bedtime. If you gorge yourself just before going to bed, you may experience discomfort or need to get up and use the bathroom in the middle of the night.
- Avoid smoking, alcohol and caffeine. Nicotine and caffeine are stimulants that keep you awake. Alcohol tampers with the restorative effects of sleep. Alcohol is also a diuretic, which will necessitate a middle-of-the-night bathroom break.
- Use your bed for sleep and sex. These are the only activities you should do in bed. Don’t read, work on your laptop or watch late-night television when you hit the pillow. Light from electronic devices can trick your body into staying awake, so keep your room dark and relaxing.
- Exercise in the morning. A late evening workout may work for your schedule, but it doesn’t work for healthy sleeping habits. Try to work out in the morning or right after work for better results.
Experts say that if you rely on an alarm clock, you’re not getting enough sleep. You should be able to wake up naturally, with no help, once your body has received enough quality sleep.
If you’re worried that lack of sleep and other health conditions might be leading you down a path toward diabetes, there is still time to reverse the process. Sign up today for a free blood screening and complimentary consultation with a physician who can tell you more about your risk and what you can do to prevent the onset of diabetes.