Research conducted at the University of Colorado Boulder determined too much or too little of sleep can augment the risk of a heart attack.
The study was conducted with nearly half a million people and was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. The research further also stated that the risk was higher for those with a high genetic risk and who slept between 6 to 9 hours at night.
The researchers examined genetic information, along with self-reported sleep habits and medical records of 461,000 UK Biobank participants, within the age group of 40 to 69. These had a heart attack and experts followed their course for seven years.
It was observed that people who slept for 6 to 9 hours every night and those who slept less than six hours had a 20 percent greater chance to have a heart attack. Furthermore, those who slept for more than nine hours had 34 percent chance of an attack.
Researchers further observed only those who had genetic predisposition to a heart disease. Among them they found, those who slept between six to nine hours at night had a minimized risk of 18 percent to a heart attack.
“It’s kind of a hopeful message, that regardless of what your inherited risk for heart attack is, sleeping a healthy amount may cut that risk just like eating a healthy diet, not smoking, and other lifestyle approaches can,” according to Iyas Daghlas, a medical student at Harvard.
Based on the latest study, experts confirmed the previous research link between sleep and heart health. However, researchers claim those studies were only observational and did not provide sufficient evidence to support the fact that poor sleep was responsible for causing a heart problem.
The study experts thus referred to an expansive UK Biobank dataset which used a combination of genetic and observational research.
The study analysed 30 other factors, such as physical activity, body composition, mental health and socioeconomic status. Based on the evidence gathered, it was inferred, sleep duration played a significant role in influencing a heart attack, irrespective of the other factors.
It was also concluded that the more people fell outside the 6-9 hour sleep range, the greater risk it involved. Those who slept five hours per night, had 52 percent of higher heart risk, whereas those who slept 7-8 hours, or those who slept 10 hours every night, were twice likely to have a heart disease.
The genetic profiles of the participants were observed on the basis of a method called the Mendelian randomization. Furthermore, if genetic predisposition to short sleep was likely to develop a heart risk was tested. It was concluded that twenty-seven genetic variants were linked with short sleep.
Sleeping less can have an impact on the lining of endothelium and arteries. It can also affect the bone marrow development or the inflammatory cells, whereas sleeping more can boost the body inflammation and is linked closely with cardiovascular diseases.