Attempting to get extra sleep on the weekend to make up for lost sleep during the week has no lasting metabolic health benefits and can actually make our ability to regulate blood sugar worse, according to new University of Colorado Boulder research.
Insufficient sleep and untreated sleep disorders put people at increased risk for metabolic problems, including obesity and diabetes. But is extra sleep on the weekends enough to reduce those risks? The short answer, according to new findings reported in Current Biology on Feb. 28, is 'no.'
Fat cells in the human body have their own internal clocks and exhibit circadian rhythms affecting critical metabolic functions, new research in the journal Scientific Reports, finds.
With growing time demands, many middle-aged adults are finding time to engage in exercise increasingly difficult. For many, even the thought of fitting exercise in after a busy day at work can be as tiring as it is unappetizing. The standing belief that high-intensity exercise should be avoided in the early evening due to its effect on sleep only serves to act as another barrier to exercise at this time.
Exercise can shift the human body clock, with the direction and amount of this effect depending on the time of day or night in which people exercise. That's according to new research in published in The Journal of Physiology. These findings suggest exercise could counter the effects of jet lag, shift work, and other disruptions to the body's internal clock (e.g., military deployments) helping individuals adjust to shifted schedules.
'Night owls' -- those who go to bed and get up later -- have fundamental differences in their brain function compared to 'morning larks,' which mean they could be disadvantaged by the constraints of a normal working day.
Researchers say they are closer to solving the mystery of how a good night's sleep protects against heart disease. In studies using mice, they discovered a previously unknown mechanism between the brain, bone marrow, and blood vessels that appears to protect against the development of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries -- but only when sleep is healthy and sound.
Researchers at Tokyo Medical and Dental University (TMDU) used zebrafish to study the effects of knocking out three clock genes, Cry1a, Cry2a, and Per2. They compared wild-type zebrafish with those with single, double, or triple knockout of these genes under conditions of complete darkness, three hours of light, and finally 12 hours of light reflecting typical daylight. The team revealed reduced locomotion and more resting associated with gene knockout, linking this to impaired metabolism.
Humans spend nearly one-third of their lives in slumber, yet sleep is still one of biology's most enduring mysteries. Little is known about what genetic or molecular forces drive the need to sleep -- until now. In a study of over 12,000 lines of fruit flies, researchers have found a single gene, called nemuri, that increases the need for sleep.
The first and most distinct consequence of daily mild stress is an increase in rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep, a new study in the journal PNAS reports. The research also demonstrated that this increase is associated with genes involved in cell death and survival.