Health & Nutrition - - FLASH -

A new study (in Sleep) re­veals a link be­tween poor sleep qual­ity and the devel­op­ment of cog­ni­tive decline in men over three to four years. Higher lev­els of frag­mented sleep and lower sleep ef­fi­ciency were as­so­ci­ated with a 40 to 50 per cent in­crease in the odds of a clin­i­cally sig­nif­i­cant decline in ex­ec­u­tive func­tion (re­spon­si­ble for plan­ning, mak­ing de­ci­sions, cor­rect­ing er­rors, trou­bleshoot­ing, and ab­stract think­ing). The decline seen was sim­i­lar in mag­ni­tude to the ef­fect of a five-year in­crease in age – but sleep du­ra­tion was not re­lated to cog­ni­tive decline. The mech­a­nisms that link poor sleep to men­tal decline aren’t known, and fur­ther re­search is needed to de­ter­mine if this as­so­ci­a­tion re­mains af­ter a longer fol­low-up pe­riod. Poor sleep has been linked to car­dio­vas­cu­lar is­sues that have been im­pli­cated in cog­ni­tive im­pair­ment and Alzheimer’s dis­ease, how­ever, so con­sult your doc­tor if your (or your spouse’s) sleep is frag­mented.

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