Tuesday September 25, 2018

Sleep problems in menopause linked to hot flashes, depression

The women provided annual surveys and blood samples so that the researchers could track sleep disruptions, other menopausal symptoms and hormone levels

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To track poor sleep, the surveys asked questions about the frequency of insomnia, restless sleep and sleep disturbances.
Falling asleep is directly related to salary of a person. Wikimedia Commons
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A study of middle-aged women by the University of Illinois (UI) found that sleep problems vary across the stages of menopause, yet are consistently correlated with hot flashes and depression.

The UI researchers used data from the Midlife Women’s Health Study, which followed 776 women aged 45-54 in the greater Baltimore area for up to seven years.

The women provided annual surveys and blood samples so that the researchers could track sleep disruptions, other menopausal symptoms and hormone levels as women transitioned from pre- to post-menopause, Xinhua reported.

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To track poor sleep, the surveys asked questions about the frequency of insomnia, restless sleep and sleep disturbances.

The study found no correlation between the likelihood of reporting poor sleep before menopause, during menopause and after menopause.

Depression and hot flashes are two risk factors vary in reported frequency across menopausal stages.
Depression and hot flashes are two risk factors vary in reported frequency across menopausal stages. Wikimedia Commons

This means that for many women in the study, their reported sleep problems changed as they transitioned to different stages of menopause. In other words, women who had insomnia during menopause were not more likely to have insomnia after menopause.

In analyzing the surveys for any other symptoms or factors that might be associated with poor sleep, the researchers found that hot flashes and depression were strongly correlated with poor sleep across all stages of menopause.

Those two risk factors vary in reported frequency across menopausal stages, which might help explain why poor sleep also varies across the stages, the researchers said.

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The findings suggest that addressing those risk factors may also address sleep disruptions, as well as give women hope that their sleep symptoms may not last past the menopausal transition, said Rebecca Smith, a UI professor of pathobiology.

Smith conducted the study with Jodi Flaws and Megan Mahoney, professors of comparative biosciences at Illinois.

The study has been published in the journal Sleep Medicine. (IANS)

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Losing Just 6 Hours of Sleep May Spike up Diabetes Risk: Study

During the sleep/wake period, the animals also had limited opportunity for physical activity

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Losing just 6 hrs of sleep may up diabetes risk
Losing just 6 hrs of sleep may up diabetes risk. Pixabay

Being deprived of sleep for just six hours or a single night may affect the liver’s ability to produce glucose and process insulin, increasing the risk of metabolic diseases such as fatty liver and Type-2 diabetes, warns a study.

Sleep deprivation has been associated with eating more, moving less and having a higher risk of developing Type-2 diabetes.

However, “it was not clear whether glucose intolerance was due to the changes in food intake or energy expenditure or to the sleep deprivation itself,” explained a team of researchers from Toho University in Japan.

In the study done over mice, blood glucose levels were found significantly higher in the sleep deprivation group than controls after one six-hour session of wakefulness.

Triglyceride (fat) levels and the production of glucose in the liver also increased in the sleep deprivation group after a single wake period.

Elevated liver triglycerides are associated with insulin resistance, or the inability of the body to process insulin properly.

Diabetes
Representational image. Pixabay

In addition, lack of sleep changed the expression of enzymes that regulate metabolism in the liver in the sleep deprivation group.

These findings suggest that “intervention studies designed to prevent sleep deprivation-induced hepatic steatosis and insulin resistance should be performed in the future,” the researchers noted.

For the study, published in the American Journal of Physiology — Endocrinology and Metabolism, the team examined two groups of mice.

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One group was kept awake for six hours each night (“sleep deprivation”), while the control group was allowed to sleep as desired.

The team offered unlimited high-fat food and sugar water — mimicking lifestyle-related food choices that people make — to both groups prior to the study.

During the sleep/wake period, the animals also had limited opportunity for physical activity. (IANS)

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