Hispanic men, African American men and men living in poverty are more likely to disproportionately suffer from restless sleep and chronic disease compared to non-Hispanic whites, indicates research recently published in the journal Ethnicity & Disease. According to the data, the sleep issues seen correspond in minorities along with chronic disease rates, though no link was established during the study.
“Since the racial differences in many diseases mirror the racial differences we see in sleep, we checked to see if sleep causes differences in these diseases,” lead author Rebecca S. Piccolo, Sc.M., associate director for health services and disparities research at the New England Research Institutes, said in a press release.
Because sleep-related health issues are often the most easily treatable issues, according to researchers, more investigation into the link between sleep and health should be pursued. Sleep restriction causes physiological changes that can directly increase an individual’s risk for obesity and obesity-related illnesses, and a lack of sleep can cause hormonal changes and promote excessive fat storage.
Out of more than 5,000 study participants, Piccolo and her team found African American and Hispanic men were more likely than non-Hispanic white men to report sleeping less than 5 hours each night. Men living in poverty were also likelier to report short sleep regardless of ethnicity, and researchers found that being of a lower socioeconomic class was actually more strongly linked to sleep disparities than were ethnic differences.
Individuals in the study who experienced restless sleep had a 66 percent increased likelihood to be obese after 5 years, as well as a 50 percent increased risk of having type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Read full story: http://voxxi.com/2013/12/19/restless-sleep-hispanics/