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Quality sleep and Cancer Risk
Good Sleep Associated with Lower Cancer Rates
Two new studies link breathing problems with higher cancer rates and increased mortality.
Due to be presented in San Francisco this week at an American Thoracic Society conference, the findings underscore a major position of iSleep for many years: disrupted breathing is linked to low blood oxygen levels. That lack of oxygen can trigger the development of tumors.
Sleep apnea is widely understood to be related to obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes — conditions that are also linked to cancer.
One study, conducted at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health over 22 years, found that severe breathing problems at night increase the likelihood of dying from cancer by 4.8 times, compared to people who breathe well at night. People with moderate apnea were found to have double the risk of dying.
A second set of findings, from the Spanish Sleep Network, assessed the incidence of cancer, rather than the mortality rate.
Following 5,200 people over seven years, the study tracked oxygen depletion and found, for example, that people whose oxygen levels dipped during sleep, had a 68 percent greater chance of developing cancer, than people who did breathe well at night.
Dr. Nieto will presented his study May 20 at the American Thoracic Society 2012 International Conference in San Francisco. It will be published in American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.
People who are “night owls” have a tendency to spend more minutes sitting and are less motivated to regularly exercise, according to a new study from researchers in the Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago, IL.
Glazer Baron provides: “We found that even among healthy, active individuals, sleep timing and circadian preference are related to activity patterns and attitudes toward physical activity. Waking up late and being an evening person were related to more time spent sitting, particularly on weekends and with difficulty making time to exercise.”
A patient’s daily sleeping schedule should be considered when giving exercise advice, especially for less active adults, the study suggests.
Helping your patients understand the importance of sleep and how to achieve it naturally is a critical part of their care.
Being a Night Owl is genetic
All of our body’s processes follow a daily cycle controlled by our circadian clock. A common gene variant that affects virtually the entire population has been found that is responsible for up to an hour a day of our tendencies to be an early bird or night owl.
“The internal ‘biological clock’ regulates many aspects of human biology and behavior, such as preferred sleep times, times of peak cognitive performance, and the timing of many physiological processes. It also influences the timing of acute medical events like stroke and heart attack,” says first author Andrew Lim, MD, who conducted the work as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Neurology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC).
“This particular genotype affects the sleep-wake pattern of virtually everyone walking around, and it is a fairly profound effect so that the people who have the A-A genotype wake up about an hour earlier than the people who have the G-G genotype, and the A-Gs wake up almost exactly in the middle,” explains Saper, who is also the James Jackson Putnam Professor of Neurology and Neuroscience at Harvard Medical School.
This same genotype predicted six hours of the variation in the time of death: those with the AA or AG genotype died just before 11 a.m., like most of the population, but those with the GG genotype on average died at just before 6 p.m.
“Also, working out which causes of death are influenced by gene variants like the one we identified may eventually lead to rational timed interventions – such as taking heart medications at particular times depending on which version of the gene variant one carries – to provide protection during an individuals’ period of greatest risk,” says Lim. The potential clinical applications may be as diverse as the many processes that the circadian clock controls.
Women tend to be Early Risers and men tend to be Night Owls.
Night owls report more insomnia symptoms
The study was authored by Jason C. Ong, PhD, and researchers at Stanford University.
Comparing people with insomnia who prefer evening activities, the “night owls,” to the morning and
“Our findings indicate that further research should investigate the relationship between circadian
Best time of day to treat patients and peak
Night owls nervous systems function differently
Researchers at the University of Alberta have found that there are significant differences in the
way our nervous systems function depending on whether we’re early birds or night owls.
Neuroscientists divided the study subjects into two groups: those who wake up early and felt
most productive in the morning, and those who typically felt livelier at night.
Muscle torque and the excitability of pathways through the spinal cord and brain were tested
using magnetic resonance imaging-guided brain stimulation. It was found that morning
people’s brains were most excitable at 9 a.m. This slowly decreased through the day and it
was shifted 12 hours later for evening people, their brains were most excitable at 9 p.m.
Other reported major findings:
- Evening people became physically stronger throughout the day, but the maximum amount
of force morning people could produce remained the same.
- The excitability of reflex pathways that travel through the spinal cord increased over the day
for both groups.
These findings show that nervous-system functions are different and have implications for
maximizing human performance. This could also influence the optimum time of day for
treatment or adjustment. Are your various patients morning or evening oriented?
These findings were published in the June edition of the Journal of Biological Rhythms.
The research team, included students Alex Tamm, Olle Lagerquist, technician Alex Ley and
neuroscientist Dave Collins.
A Nap for Every Purpose
Duration and timing are important
A nap is a nap is a nap. Ummm, No. A lot of research has gone into napping since sleep knowledge
There are now nap strategies for different purposes and here is a summary of some of them.
Naps during the afternoon can restore alertness and improve performance and learning. Naps before
and during night shifts can have similar benefits to daytime naps and can reduce musculoskeletal
pain. Night shift naps combined with caffeine are the most effective.
Long naps can interfere with night-time sleep, affecting the ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Frequent long duration naps are associated with higher morbidity and mortality, including more
daytime sleepiness, more pain and fatigue, increased body mass index and waist circumference,
higher risk of falls in the elderly, and higher risk of developing diabetes. However, people who
nap short periods two or three times a week have a 37% lower chance of heart attack. A routine
schedule is important. Because napping affects night-time sleep, we can balance the two if there
Even occaisional naps are beneficial to the immune system, expecially after a night of poor sleep.
Short naps improve fatigue, vigor, and cognitive performance. Between 2:00 and 3:00 PM is the
sweet spot for a nap.
Generally, naps should be less than 30 minutes or more than 90 minutes. Less than 30 and you
probably won’t go into deep sleep and therefore avoid sleep inertia and more than 90 should give
you a complete cycle with both slow wave and REM sleep stages.
Here are some guidelines for successful
daytime napping duration
10 minutes naps produce immediate results lasting about two hours.
20 minutes naps produce about the same results as a 10 minute nap but with a 30 minute delay.
30 minutes and longer naps can cause loss of alertness and productivity and create sleep inertia
as well as interfere with night-time sleep.
60 to 90 minutes naps within four hours of the study or training can yield the benefits equal to
eight hours of sleep.
Napping excess remember that long and frequent naps interfere with night-time sleep and the
resulting poor sleep leads to pressure to nap more.
Covid-19 Guide your Patients to Safety Sleep your way through the pandemic
Fighting this virus by increasing the immune system’s effectiveness is the ideal solution.
Doctors who communicate this to their patients in their office, social media, email and the media are making a difference. Your patients need you now, more than ever.
Chiropractic care fights disease and we all know that Sleep is important for everything.
No overstatement there. Quality sleep coupled with chiropractic care can be the most powerful weapons against disease. Our own experiences and studies have shown it.
Two simple rules can greatly improve the power of your and your patient’s sleep.
When we sleep our immune systems are recharged. Empowered to destroy biological invaders and control inflammation at the same time. During sleep your body makes cytokines, a protein that targets infection and can reduce inflammation. Without quality sleep we get the wrong cytokines and instead of fighting disease we get inflammation.
Studies have shown that sleep is the #1 factor in avoiding a cold after exposure to the cold virus. Studies have also shown that poor sleep can reduce the production of antibodies produced after a flu vaccine by 50 percent.
The maximum strength of our immune systems depends on quality sleep.
What are the two most important habits connected with quality sleep?
It turns out that timing is everything. We only produce the “good stuff” in certain stages of sleep and at certain times of our biological day. Sleep the correct stage at the wrong time and it won’t happen, sleep the correct time and the wrong stage and it won’t happen either. Nothing, very little benefit. So, how do we get the magic combination of best sleep stage and correct timing? (It may be counter intuitive.)
- Wake up at the same time EVERY day and
- Sleep eight hours every night.
If you do not have that kind of schedule now, then start. It will take days or even weeks for your biological clock to reset. You might not feel the best during this transition. But it must be done. Once your body clock and sleep cycles are aligned you will be better able to stay healthy. You will now experience deep slow wave sleep during the first third of the night and your core body temperature and physiology will match for peak immune production.
Stay with it. For every day you alter the schedule, your internal clock will slide and you will go out of sync. Even worse, your clock only tends to go later. It won’t back up well, if at all. So that alignment process you just completed will nearly start over.
What is quality sleep and how do we achieve it? Here are our Five Principles of Healthy Sleep.
Finally – research has shown that having a thankful attitude before bed improves sleep and health. Having the mind at peace reduces the stress hormone cortisol and lowers blood pressure and prepares the body for deep sleep.
Every night we thank you for your devotion and efforts in helping everyone to live healthier and happier lives. We wish you a future of quality sleep.
Additional articles on sleep and the following subjects:
- Sleep and Muscle Mass
- Sleep and Bone Density
- Sleep Posture and Injury Recovery
- Sleep and Cancer Risk
- Night Owls
- A Nap for Every Purpose