Nature

US Health Authorities Designate Sleep as a Major Indicator of Heart Health After Growing Evidence

Sleep is more of a biological necessity rather than a habit alone; with scientific evidence showing that sleep brings a myriad of health factors, including those affecting the brain and other organs of the body.

While conventional notions of sleep are evident even from anecdotal evidence, its main trigger and function still remains one of the most unique topics in the scientific community.

In recent months, US health authorities have already designated sleep to be a major indicator and factor of heart health, making it a crucial part or important factor when it comes to cardiovascular health.

Meanwhile, authorities still emphasized that sleep deprivation can make its beneficial effects to the heart go sideways.

There are instances where certain medical conditions or environmental factors paved the way for sleep deprivation or lack of sleep.

The so-called mediocre sleep pertains to a sub-standard sleep in terms of quality and length of hours, which deviates from the universal recommendations laid out by the World Health Organization and the National Sleep Foundation.

Sleep deprivation is not the only factor contributing to the development of heart disease, affecting millions of people and even causes deaths worldwide.

However, such designation as a crucial aspect of heart health could yield in a paradigm shift of how people treat sleep as only a daily necessity or a life-saving activity.

Sleep and Heart Health Linkage

Sleep deprivation

(Photo : Photo by Franck Prevel/Getty Images)

According to the Pine and Lakes Echo Journal on Friday, August 5, the American Heart Association (AHA) in June added sleep to its list of health factors that are important and vital to heart health.

While sleep has been understood to cover various health benefits, there were no previous correlation between the state of slumber and condition of the heart.

Under its list entitled Life’s Essential 8TM, the AHA outline the following health behaviors and health factors necessary in life:

  •  diet
  •  physical activity
  •  nicotine exposure
  •  weight
  •  cholesterol
  •  blood sugar
  •  blood pressure
  •  sleep deprivation

While the said behaviors and factors are self-explanatory, the association still reminds the public of the importance of lifestyle and diet choices towards healthy outcomes.

In its latest addition this year, sleep has been considered as a “component” of heart health, according to the updated list.

Also Read: Sleep Deprivation Could Make the Brain Eat Itself, Increasing Risk of Alzheimer’s

Sleep Deprivation and Heart Disease

According to the Sleep Foundation, the term sleep deprivation actually refers to getting less than the required amount of sleep, which ranges from seven to nine hours for adults each night.

The nightly sleeping hours could be even more for children and teens.

In its basic form, the foundation provides three different types of sleep deprivation, such as, acute sleep deprivation, chronic sleep deprivation, and chronic sleep deficiency or insufficient sleep.

Prevailing research claims that prolonged or recurring sleep deprivation leads to a cascade of degenerating health conditions, ranging from physical fatigue to mental degradation.

With the latest AHA update, heart disease could also be potentially linked as factors being considered in case of medical diagnosis in the future.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines heart disease is an umbrella term used to refer to multiple types of heart conditions, with their most common symptoms such as the fatal heart attack, heart failure, and arrhythmia.

Related Article: Heart Health Benefits The Same For Runners And Walkers, Study Shows

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