For many U.S. adults, sleep of 6 hours a night may increase their risk of diabetes -- not because of weight gain, but insulin resistance, researchers say.
Peter Liu of the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute said getting enough sleep each day might do a lot to reduce the risk of diabetes.
Liu and colleagues at the University of Sydney in Australia checked insulin sensitivity - the body's ability to clear blood sugar from the bloodstream - in 19 non-diabetic men who got about 6 hours of sleep a night during the workweek, but 10 hours on weekend nights.
"By extending sleep to 10 hours a night versus 6 hours a night over just three days, we were able to improve insulin sensitivity, which is a marker of diabetes," Liu said in a statement.
Liu said findings suggest people should get enough sleep regularly -- not just on weekends.
The study was presented at an Endocrine Society meeting.
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