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Sleeping too much can Increase Diabetes Risk in Women, Study Finds

Update Date: Nov 04, 2015 03:55 PM EST

Getting the right amount of sleep every night might be even more important than ever before. According to a new study, women who sleep too much have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

For this study, the researchers tracked the health of nearly 60,000 American female nurses between the ages of 55 and 83. They focused on the participants' sleeping patterns from 1986 to 2000 as well as the number of type 2 diabetes cases that were diagnosed from 2000 to 2012. In total, there were around 3,500 cases.

The team then looked at numerous factors to see what could be contributing to the women's risk of diabetes and found only one significant factor. They reported that women who changed up their sleeping schedule by adding two or more hours per night had a 15 percent increased risk of developing diabetes. The researchers noted that women who chronically slept very little and then added two or more hours experienced the greatest increase in their diabetes risk (21 percent).

"Increasing sleep duration after previous years of short sleep may not be a panacea," said study author Elizabeth Cespedes, a research postdoctoral fellow at Kaiser Permanente Division of Research in California, reported by HealthDay via

The researchers noted that sleeping six hours or less was tied to an increased risk as well but this finding was not statistically significant.

The researchers stated that the findings do not suggest causation. Cespedes added that in other studies, too much or too little sleep could contribute to poor eating and exercise habits, which could then increase risk obesity and diabetes.

The study was published in the journal, Diabetologia.

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