Sleeping for longer leads to a healthier diet

Credit: Charles Rondeau/public domain

Sleeping for longer each night is a simple lifestyle intervention that could help reduce intake of sugary foods and lead to a generally healthier diet, according to a King’s College London study.

Sleep is a modifiable risk factor for various conditions including obesity and cardio-metabolic disease with some figures suggesting more than a third of adults in the UK are not getting enough sleep.

The randomised controlled trial, which is published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, looked at the feasibility of increasing sleep hours in adults who typically slept for less than the recommended minimum for adults of seven hours.

Alongside this, the researchers undertook a pilot investigation that looked at the impact of increasing sleep hours on nutrient intake. They found that extending resulted in a 10-gram reduction in reported intake of free sugars compared to baseline levels. The researchers also noticed trends for reduced intake of total carbohydrates reported by the sleep extension group.

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