The importance of getting a good night’s sleep–normally between six to eight hours–should never be underestimated. Sleep is essential, as it affects how we feel, look, and perform on a daily basis. While we sleep, the body is conducting a number of activities, including growth, cell repair, and boosting the immune system. Not to mention, sleep restores energy and impacts our overall quality of life.
If you think lack of sleep isn’t a serious matter, you might want to think again. A lack of sleep can cause a wide array of severe issues and cause people to feel cranky, be less focused and more forgetful. Here are six conditions that are brought on by a lack of sleep that you should keep an eye on.
Sleep is necessary for the brain to export cerebral waste to prevent it from accumulating and causing dementia and other illnesses like Alzheimer’s. According to a recent study published in the JAMA Neurology journal, researchers from Johns Hopkins discovered that little sleep or poor quality of sleep is linked to Alzheimer’s disease and can even influence its progression. The study followed 70 adults between the ages of 53 and 91. Participants with poor sleep habits were found to have higher quantities of beta-amyloid deposition in their brains, according to PET scans. Ultimately, researchers concluded that poor sleep prevented the brain from clearing beta-amyloid waste that leads to cerebral disease.Related: 11 Predictors of Alzheimer’s
5. Obesity and Diabetes
According to researchers from the University of Chicago, a link between poor sleep and obesity has been discovered that ultimately leads to diabetes. The study found that little sleep led to fatty acid buildup, which impacts both metabolism and insulin sensitivity. The study analyzed the sleep patterns of 19 male participants over three nights, and researchers found that men who only slept for four hours had fatty acid blood levels 15 to 30 percent higher than participants who slept 8.5 hours a night. Those who slept for less time also showed signs of prediabetes and obesity, while those who slept more showed no signs.