Lack of sleep ‘may help make youngsters obese’

UK Telegraph 19 Oct 06
Lack of sleep could be contributing to the rise in obesity in children, a researcher says today. Dr Sharad Taheri, of the Henry Wellcome Institute, University of Bristol, says children are staying up to watch television, talk to friends on their mobiles and use their computers. “Sleep is probably not the only answer to the obesity pandemic but its effect should be taken seriously, as even small changes in energy balance are beneficial,” he says in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.In his review of published studies, Dr Taheri says levels of ghrelin, a hormone released by the stomach to signal hunger, were found to be 15 per cent higher in people who had only five hours sleep a night compared with those who slept for eight.

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