Night shift workers are among those most affected.
Your mother was right: regular bedtimes and a good night’s sleep are good for you — or at least, researchers reported, irregular bedtimes and not enough sleep are bad for you.
In a 39-day experiment with healthy volunteers, shortened sleep time and varying bedtimes — meant to mimic shift work — led to impaired glucose regulation and metabolism, according to Orfeu Buxton, PhD, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and colleagues.
Over time, the observed changes could increase the risk of obesity and diabetes, Buxton and colleagues reported online in Science Translational Medicine.
The findings support epidemiological studies linking disrupted sleep with an increased risk of metabolic syndrome and diabetes, the researchers noted — especially in workers on the night shift.