Long naps linked to diabetes

A midday snooze might recharge your batteries, but a new study suggests that nappers might be at a higher risk for diabetes.

Researchers from the Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands found that naps of different durations can affect the body differently, with longer naps being more detrimental to health.

The study

The study subjects were 27,000 retired Chinese men and women who were categorized into four groups based on how long they napped, from zero minutes to more than 60 minutes.

While people who took short naps (less than 30 minutes) had lower blood-sugar levels than non-nappers, longer naps (more than 60 minutes) were associated with high blood sugar levels and diabetes.

More than two-thirds of the participants reported taking regular afternoon naps, and the researchers adjusted for other factors like smoking, night sleeping patterns and physical activity.

"Taking a so-called power nap may be useful for certain individuals, but naps should not be too long," wrote researcher Eliane Lucassen in the journal Sleep Medicine.

Naps and insulin

Previous studies have found that diabetes can be linked to either too much or too little night sleep, but the new findings suggest that day sleeping can affect blood sugar as well. Long naps can disturb the body's internal clock, which regulates the release of insulin, Lucassen said, while shorter naps don't cause this effect.

"The findings may have important implications for people who regularly nap," Lucassen concluded.

Source: Live Science

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