Adolescents with overweight or obesity who report poor sleep quality or daytime sleepiness are more likely to have a higher BMI and HbA1c when compared with similar adolescents who do not report sleep disturbances, likely further increasing the risk for developing type 2 diabetes, according to findings published in Pediatric Diabetes.

“Clinicians need to be aware that poor sleep quality and short sleep duration are prevalent, and some of the sleep disturbances are associated with obesity and worse glucose metabolism,” Babak Mokhlesi, MD, MSc, professor of medicine and director of the Sleep Disorders Center at the University of Chicago, told Endocrine Today.

In a cross-sectional study, Mokhlesi and colleagues analyzed data from 214 youths aged 10 to 19 years with overweight or obesity who were at risk for or recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes (67% female; mean age, 14 years; mean BMI, 35.9 kg/m²; 54.7% with prediabetes; 27.6% with type 2 diabetes). The participants, who were screened as part of the Restoring Insulin Secretion (RISE) study, underwent a 2-hour oral glucose tolerance test and HbA1c measurement and completed the 26-item Sleep Disturbances Scale questionnaire to assess subjective sleep duration and quality and the 16-item Cleveland Adolescent Sleepiness questionnaire to assess daytime sleepiness. Researchers used linear regression models to evaluate independent associations between sleep variables and measures of glycemia, BMI and blood pressure.