Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Snoring, sleep problems may signal heart risk
"People who snore loudly, have difficulty falling asleep, or often wake up feeling tired may have more to worry about than dozing off at work. A new study suggests they may also be at increased risk of developing heart disease and other health problems down the road. In the study, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh asked more than 800 people between the ages of 45 and 74 about the quality of their sleep. Three years later, the people who reported snoring loudly were more than twice as likely as quiet sleepers to have metabolic syndrome - a cluster of risk factors for heart disease, diabetes, and stroke that includes high blood pressure, high blood sugar, low "good" cholesterol, high triglycerides, and excess belly fat. People who had trouble falling asleep or who woke up feeling unrefreshed at least three times per week were about 80 percent and 70 percent more likely than their peers, respectively, to develop three or more of those risk factors, the study found. (A person must have three of the five risk factors to get a diagnosis of metabolic syndrome.)"