May 04, 2017
Short sleep patterns probed
Almost a third of Maori aren't getting enough sleep.
Researchers from Massey’s Sleep/Wake Research Centre have found 29 per cent of Maori and 22 per cent of non-Maori sleep less than seven hours a night on days when they work or study.
A third of the short sleepers try to catch up with sleep on the weekends, causing what is known as social jetlag.
Lead researcher Associate Professor Leigh Signal has now created an online survey aimed at uncovering factors affecting sleep behaviour and tracking the consequences.
He says there is strong evidence sleeping less than seven hours a night on an on-going basis, and/or regularly shifting the timing of sleep, puts people at increased risk of metabolic disorders and obesity.
This can increase the risk of impaired glucose tolerance, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, poor general health and premature death.
While previous research treated short sleepers as one population, Dr Signal says it's better to split them into different groups such as people who biologically do not need more than seven hours sleep, and people who cut their sleep short because of other commitments.
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