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Healthy Sleep Patterns Linked With Lower Risk of Heart Failure

Feb, 2021 - By WMR

Healthy Sleep Patterns Linked With Lower Risk of Heart Failure

A recent study found 40% lower risk of heart failure in adults with a healthy sleeping pattern irrespective of other risk factors, compared to those with an unhealthy sleep schedule.

The study which was published in the Circulation journal explained that healthy sleeping habits included seven to eight hours of sleep, waking early in the morning, no symptoms of sleep apnea, snoring, and insomnia. To understand the relationship between heart failure and healthy sleep patterns, researchers analyzed data of over 400,000 UK Biobank participants in the age group of 37 to 73 between 2006 and 2010. Heart disease incidence was studied until 1st April 2019, and over 5000 heart failure cases were recorded during the follow-up period ranging around a decade.

The team evaluated sleep patterns and quality of sleep which included insomnia, snoring, and duration of sleep. Moreover, researchers also considered whether participants were early risers or late sleepers, as well as whether participants felt sleepy during daytime or were likely to doze off. Data on sleep behavior was collected with the means of touchscreen questionnaires, and the duration of sleep was classified into 3 groups; short (less than 7 hours), recommended (7-8 hours), and prolonged (9 hours or more). Health factors of participants such as history of hypertension, diabetes, medications, genetics, and others. Participants with healthy sleep behavior witnessed 42% decline in heart failure risk as opposed to those with unhealthy sleep quality.

The results were as follows:

  • 8% lower risk of heart failure in early risers
  • 12% lower risk in participants in the recommended group
  • 17% lower risk among those with infrequent insomnia
  • 34% lower risk of heart failure in participants who did not experience daytime sleepiness

Participants self-reported their sleep patterns, however, information regarding changes in sleep patterns during the follow-up period were unavailable. It is also worth noting that some unmeasured or unidentified modifications may have also influenced the results.

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