Study: Too little sleep may lead to heart problems or stroke

Feb 11 2011

Noise reduction shades can be added to a bedroom to ensure a good night's sleep.
Noise reduction shades can be added to a bedroom to ensure a good night's sleep.
Getting too little sleep may increase a person's risk of heart attack or stroke, according to a British study that was based on data from eight countries, including the U.S.

The sleep habits of about 470,000 people were examined for the study, published in the February issue of the European Heart Journal.

"If you sleep less than six hours per night and have disturbed sleep, you stand a 48 percent greater chance of developing or dying from heart disease and a 15 percent greater chance of developing or dying of a stroke," said Dr. Francesco Cappuccio, of the Warwick Medical School in England.

According to the study, too little sleep produces hormones that increase the risk of heart problems, as well as related conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and obesity.

Cappuccio recommended about seven hours of sleep nightly reduces the risk of chronic disease.

The choice of window treatment can play a role in helping family members get a good night's sleep. Noise reduction window shades can block sound from traffic, nearby trains or neighborhood noise that cause people to wake easily.
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