Study Shows Strong Link Between Sleep Deprivation, Obesity

Lack of sleep shown to directly influence obesity rates in children

With the growing obesity epidemic, additional studies have been launched as to what may cause the staggering percent of obese individuals, especially children. What a new study has uncovered is that diet and exercise may not be the only contributors to childhood obesity.

The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) performed a study that showed how lack of sleep has been directly related to obesity and various problems with the metabolism.

Children are recommended to get around 10 hours of sleep each night.

The study evaluated more than 300 healthy children between the ages of 4 and 10. The study discovered that more than half of the children did not get enough sleep and had difficulty maintaining a consistent sleep schedule. Less than enough sleep showed to provide increased cholesterol, altered insulin levels, and increased cardiovascular disease risks.

Children receiving less sleep had nearly 4.5 times the risk of being obese when compared to children receiving enough sleep. The study showed one of three children who sleep six hours or less were obese.

Experts suggest having children tested for sleep apnea or insomnia if they have extreme difficulty sleeping on a regular basis.