Objective: The study aimed to assess the relationship between nightly sleep duration and obesity in young adult Saudi citizens.
Methods: A cross-sectional study in which eighty-one healthy young adults were enrolled. Self-reported sleep duration per night was recorded from each participant. Sleep hours were categorized into three groups: normal (7-8 h), short (≤ 6 h), and long (>8 h). Weight, height, and waist circumference were measured for all participants. Body mass index was computed and WHO guidelines was used to estimate obesity. Venous blood samples were collected at fasting and 2-h after breakfast. Blood glucose and glycated hemoglobin were assayed by standard laboratory procedures. SPSS was used to analyze data.
Results: 69.6% of overweight/obese subjects reported sleeping less than 6 hours per night while 37.1% of normal weight subject did (p=0.008). 66.7% of all participants spent over three hours per day in front of screen i.e. spent watching TV, using computer, playing video games. Data analysis revealed an inverse significant correlation between duration of sleep per night and body mass index (r=-0.246, p=0.027).
Conclusion: Our findings collectively highlight the importance of having an adequate amount of sleep per night (7-8 hours) which could help in minimizing the epidemic of obesity and its associated co-morbidities. We should encourage young adults to create a positive behavioral change and improve their lifestyle choices by changing their delay in the timing of sleep onset.