Manhattan Sleep Center: Weight & Sleep
Posted by johnsonnick on December 21st, 2016
Thanks to decades of public health education, most of us understand that being overweight or obese can have negative consequences on our health, increasing our risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and many other diseases. But did you know that being overweight strongly increases your risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and other sleep disorders?
Your body weight can greatly impact your ability to get quality sleep
Being a few extra pounds over your ideal weight is not likely to impact your sleep. However, the more weight you gain – and where on your body you gain it – the greater your sleep disorder risk becomes. As one of the best sleep centers in NYC, we feel the need to warn our patients about the impact of weight on sleep, because statistically more than half of all patients with OSA are overweight or obese.
The reason for this is that when you gain weight, some of it collects around your midsection, but it also gets distributed around the body, hiding in areas we can't see, including buildups of excess fat around the neck and at the base of the tongue. These accumulations of fat can block the upper airway, making it more difficult to breathe normally during the night.
When this blockage is mild, it leads to snoring. But as you continue to gain weight, the blockage can become so pronounced as to block the airways entirely, causing pauses in breathing called apnea. These breath stoppages can last up to a minute, and cause problems such as excessive daytime sleepiness, impaired concentration and memory, and increased risk of heart failure, hypertension, and diabetes. OSA is a serious condition, because studies correlate it with a high risk of stroke and sudden death.
Being overweight also increases your risk of RLS
Restless Leg Syndrome is a sleep disorder characterized by discomfort (unpleasant tingling, aching, or itching sensations) in your legs as you fall asleep, accompanied by an often-irresistible urge to move to relieve the symptoms. While there are many suspected causes of RLS, there is evidence that it is related to obesity.
Finally, there can be a converse relationship – poor sleep can lead to obesity
Sleep deprivation can lead to hormonal changes that disrupt your metabolism and compromise the ways in which your body uses and stores fat. In addition, sleep that is disrupted (for example, by OSA) can lead to insulin resistance, and thus an increased risk of both obesity and diabetes.
To sum up, there is a strong relationship between being overweight or obese and sleep difficulties. So if you are concerned either with your weight or actual sleep disorder symptoms you have noticed, give the NYC sleep specialists at our Manhattan sleep center a call today at 646-233-1838. We can help you lose weight and get better quality sleep.
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About the Authorjohnsonnick
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