People with sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy sleep behaviors could develop fatty liver disease, according to new research published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
Fatty liver disease is the leading chronic liver disease worldwide, affecting about a quarter of the adult population. This type of liver disease is fueled by metabolic disorders such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. Fatty liver disease may progress to end-stage liver disease, posing a major health and economic burden to society.
The researchers analyzed self-reported sleep behaviors from 5,011 Chinese adults with fatty liver disease and found late bedtime, snoring and daytime napping for over 30 minutes were significantly associated with an increased risk of fatty liver disease.
A moderate improvement in sleep quality led to a 29 percent reduction in fatty liver disease risk. People with a sedentary lifestyle and central obesity experienced more prominent adverse effects from poor sleep quality than others.
Ms. Yan Liu, Ph.D., of the Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Food, Nutrition and Health and Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, China said that “People with poor nighttime sleep and prolonged daytime napping have the highest risk for developing fatty liver disease. Our study provides evidence that even a moderate improvement in sleep quality is sufficient to reduce the risk for fatty liver disease, especially in those with unhealthy lifestyles. Given that large proportions of subjects suffering from poor sleep quality are underdiagnosed and undertreated, our study calls for more research into this field and strategies to improve sleep quality.”
According to a research by America’s Mayo Clinic found that lack of sufficient sleep combined with free access to food increases calorie consumption and consequently fat accumulation, especially unhealthy fat inside the belly.