Seven to nine hours sleep a night is the optimum for good health with higher levels of disease in those who sleep less or more than this time.
“Sleeping longer doesn’t necessarily mean you’re sleeping well. It is important to understand that both the quality and quantity of sleep impact your health,” says Dr Safwan Badr, president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.
“A healthy, balanced lifestyle is not limited to diet and fitness; when and how you sleep is just as important as what you eat or how you exercise.”
A Study by the Centers for Disease and Control Prevention of more than 54,000 people found that nearly one third slept six hours or less on average.
Nearly two thirds were optimal sleepers and 4pc slept too lon
Short sleepers reported a higher prevalence of coronary heart disease, stroke and diabetes, in addition to obesity and frequent mental distress, compared with optimal sleepers.
The same was true for long sleepers, and the associations with coronary heart disease, stroke and diabetes were even more pronounced with more sleep.
“It’s critical that adults aim for seven to nine hours of sleep each night to receive the health benefits of sleep, but this is especially true for those battling a chronic condition,” said Dr
“Common sleep illnesses — including sleep apnoea and insomnia — occur frequently in people with a chronic disease and can hinder your ability to sleep soundly.
“f you are diagnosed with a sleep illness, treating it could significantly improve disease symptoms and your quality of life.”
Some of the relationships between unhealthy sleep durations and chronic diseases were partially explained by frequent mental distress and obesity, according to study co-author Dr Janet Croft, senior chronic disease epidemiologist in CDC’s Division of Population Health.
“This suggests that physicians should consider monitoring mental health and body weight in addition to sleep health for patients with chronic diseases.”
The study is published in the October issue of the Journal SLEEP,