UA researcher studies sleep impact on obesity and chronic diseases

New research in UA obesity and sleep connection study

TUSCALOOSA , Ala. (WBRC) - We often talk about the importance of sleep, but a University of Alabama researcher is studying how sleep can affect not only your weight but other chronic diseases.

UA Health science associate professor Adam Knowlden is looking into how sleep impacts us when it comes to our health. As it relates to obesity, he’s trying to find out if lack of sleep leads to obesity or other health concerns.

There’s a two-phase part to this study.

The in-lab portion will have people use a bod pod where it will measure their body fat to get a better understanding of how that connects to sleep and cardiovascular diseases. Then people participating will take home a sleep apnea home testing kit and record how much sleep they’re getting in a sleep diary.

Overall, Knowlden wants to determine if sleep can be prescribed as an intervention from a societal stand point.

“People that actually get sufficient sleep have a higher quality of life they get more out of life. But it’s very difficult. Our culture is set up in a way that does not put sleep first, and so this research might be able to help us understand how to see the bigger picture and fit more sleep in people’s everyday lives," said Knowlden.

The study is being funded by the National institutes of health sciences. They awarded the department a $800,000 grant for the research.

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