Arora, Teresa (2012)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.
Obesity and accompanied metabolic dysfunction are global public health problems. A better understanding of factors contributing to obesity and metabolic disease development is needed, particularly lifestyle behaviours including sleep. Sleep duration has been suggested to be a contributor to obesity and metabolic dysfunction development. This thesis examines the relationships between sleep, obesity, and metabolic function in different age groups and ethnicities. The thesis also presents a model for experimental sleep manipulation that can be used to understand the underlying mechanisms for the associations among sleep duration, obesity, and metabolic dysfunction. The studies and findings were as follows:
1. Cross-sectional data from young South Asian children in Birmingham showed that ‘inadequate' sleep duration, unlike findings from different population studies, was not associated with overweight/obesity.
2. Cross-sectional data from a population of adolescents in the Midlands showed that short sleep duration was associated with increased odds of overweight/obesity.
3. Cross-sectional data from older Chinese from Guangzhou, China, showed that total long sleep duration was associated with increased odds of the metabolic syndrome.
4. Data from the experimental sleep model revealed that reducing sleep over a prolonged period is more achievable than sleep extension.
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