REM sleep associated with overweight in children and adolescents

Jun 12, 2008

Short sleep time is associated with overweight in children and adolescents, a core aspect of which may be attributed to reduced REM sleep, according to a research abstract that will be presented on Thursday at SLEEP 2008, the 22nd Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies.

The study, authored by Xianchen Liu, MD, PhD, of the University of Pittsburgh, focused on 335 participants between seven and 17 years of age, who underwent three consecutive nights of standard polysomnography, or an overnight sleep test, and weight and height assessment as part of study on the development of childhood internalizing disorders (depression and anxiety).

According to the results, compared with normal-weight children, overweight children slept about 22 minutes less, had lower sleep efficiency, shorter REM sleep periods, lower REM activity and density, and longer latency to the first REM period.

After adjustment for demographics, pubertal status, ethnicity, and psychiatric diagnosis, one hour less of total sleep increased the odds of overweight by about two-fold, one hour less of REM sleep increased the odds by about three-fold, REM density and activity below the median increased the odds by two- and three-fold, respectively.

“Given the fact that the prevalence of overweight among children and adolescents continues to increase, and chronic sleep insufficiency becomes more and more prevalent in the modern society, family and school-based sleep interventions which aim to enhance sleep hygiene and increase sleep duration may have important public health implications for the prevention and intervention of obesity and type-two diabetes in children and adolescents,” said Dr. Liu.

Studies have linked sleep deprivation among children and adolescents to increased incidence of obesity and cardiovascular disease, and can also result in behavioral problems, lead to poor academic performance and affect relationships with their peers.

It is recommended that adolescents get nine hours of nightly sleep and school-aged children between 10-11 hours.

Source: American Academy of Sleep Medicine

Explore further: Exploring 3-D printing to make organs for transplants

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Babies and sleep: Another reason to love naps

Feb 22, 2010

Anyone who grew up in a large family likely remembers hearing "Don't wake the baby." While it reinforces the message to older kids to keep it down, research shows that sleep also is an important part of how infants learn ...

Recommended for you

Exploring 3-D printing to make organs for transplants

Jul 30, 2014

Printing whole new organs for transplants sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie, but the real-life budding technology could one day make actual kidneys, livers, hearts and other organs for patients ...

High frequency of potential entrapment gaps in hospital beds

Jul 30, 2014

A survey of beds within a large teaching hospital in Ireland has shown than many of them did not comply with dimensional standards put in place to minimise the risk of entrapment. The report, published online in the journal ...

Key element of CPR missing from guidelines

Jul 29, 2014

Removing the head tilt/chin lift component of rescue breaths from the latest cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) guidelines could be a mistake, according to Queen's University professor Anthony Ho.

Burnout impacts transplant surgeons (w/ Video)

Jul 28, 2014

Despite saving thousands of lives yearly, nearly half of organ transplant surgeons report a low sense of personal accomplishment and 40% feel emotionally exhausted, according to a new national study on transplant surgeon ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

westonprice
not rated yet Jun 13, 2008
Sleep deprivation is not the cause but another symptom (like obesity, diabetes) of metabolic difficulties which are no doubt related to the chemicals being ingested, excess carbohydrates being a major one.