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Staying up late? It’s a killer!

‘There’s plenty of time to sleep when I’m dead! ’ ….Its a very common attitude adopted by many worldwide…but lack of sleep is very serious and guaranteed to shorten your life!

Your Metabolic Health determines your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, type2 diabetes, cancer, and dementia. Too little exercise, smoking and a diet high in sugar, carbs and processed foods individually and collectively damage your health.

In today's sleep-deprived society, sleep disorders are increasingly common. We know from research that sleep is intricately connected to the body's hormonal and metabolic processes and is therefore crucial in maintaining metabolic health.

Research has shown that sleep disorders and deprivation have long-term metabolic and cardiovascular consequences. Chronic sleep loss, sleep-disordered breathing, and sleep apnoea all lead to metabolic dysregulation via a variety of pathways, including sympathetic overstimulation (being permanently in “fight or flight” mode) hormonal imbalance, and inflammation.

In a new study published in ‘Diabetologia’, a correlation was found between disturbed sleep patterns such as going to sleep after midnight and how our bodies metabolise breakfast. A lack of sleep hindered the body's ability to return blood sugar (glucose) levels to normal after eating.

So going to bed late on a regular basis can damage your metabolism and affect your body's ability to regulate blood sugar. The length of time spent asleep doesn’t seem to make the difference — so even if you went to bed at 1 a.m. and woke up at noon, the body processes the first meal of the day poorly.

The body takes longer to recover from eating breakfast if your sleep is disrupted or if you fall asleep after midnight. Normally, it takes insulin 30 minutes to shuttle glucose from the bloodstream into cells.

The research found a clear difference between the responses based on sleep quality. People with interrupted sleep or late bedtimes had higher glucose levels for longer after eating, as well as slower metabolisms.

Moreover, the study also found that sleeping for longer periods at a time was linked to lower blood glucose levels following high-carbohydrate breakfasts. This is significant because an increase in dietary carbs leads the body to turn them into sugar (glucose) when digested. Therefore, a good night's sleep helps the body's insulin sensitivity, lowering blood glucose levels.

Blood sugar levels that are chronically raised can lead to type 2 diabetes and other metabolic problems that will affect health in the longer run. It is also a great reason to opt for an egg-based breakfast over a carb-based one, especially after a poor night’s sleep. But equally importantly, this is a warning not to drink sugar-laden energy drinks EVER!

You can look after your metabolic health by maintaining a good diet, exercising and correcting your sleeping pattern. This is essential for optimal health and wellbeing.

We spend almost a third of our lives snoozing which might sound a lot, but rest is as vital to our bodies as eating, drinking and breathing, and is crucial for great mental as well as physical wellbeing.

To find out more about how sleep and stress affect your health watch this video with Graham Phillips.

And please fill out our FREE sleep questionnaire to understand your body clock better. Our questionnaire will help you to understand what times of the day you are more productive and what times are the best for you to sleep.

Click here to read the full study in Diabetologia