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Adequate Sleep Promotes Cardiovascular Health

July 29, 2013

Are you getting enough sleep? A well-rested heart is a healthy heart. A recent study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology and reported in Men’s Fitness Magazine outlined four heart-healthy behaviors for study participants to adopt, and added that participants who received an adequate amount of sleep were less like to develop or die from cardiovascular disease.

sleeping is good for heart healthFirst, 14,000 men and women between the ages of 20 and 65 were asked to eat a nutritious diet, exercise, refrain from smoking and drink alcohol in moderation. Those that adopted all four of the healthy behaviors outlined by researchers were "…57% less likely to develop cardiovascular disease—and had a 67% lower chance of dying from heart or blood vessel problems" in comparison to those who adopted one or none of the habits.

Then researchers found out that the study participants that adopted the four habits and also got at least seven hours of sleep per night were "…65% less likely to develop cardiovascular disease and had an 83% lower chance of dying from it."

While inadequate sleep has been thought to contribute to obesity, high blood pressure, and higher cholesterol levels, the published study did not give exact reasons as to why adequate sleep can benefit those who already have a heart-healthy lifestyle.

For their part, Men's Fitness concluded that "If you’re cutting out sleep in order to hit the gym, it might be time to shift your schedule around so you can give your heart the best of both worlds." It is not worth it to sacrifice sleep for the other components of a heart-healthy lifestyle because sleep is an important part of keeping your heart healthy.