While everyone knows a good night’s sleep is important, a new study reveals catching enough Z’s could be more crucial to good health than previously thought!

Published in the current issue of the journal American Academy of Neurology, the study suggests insomnia in younger people could be linked to heart disease and stroke later in life.

Researchers say people who have trouble sleeping are 22% more likely to suffer from coronary artery disease and 10 percent more likely to suffer a stroke! The findings were consistent in a number of patients, even with those who drink and smoke, the study’s authors say.

The only thing the study didn’t determine is why.

While Harvard Dr. Natalia Rost says prior research has linked poor sleep quality to changes in hormone function and metabolism, it’s unclear why it affects the heart and brain. “While we don’t understand the exact link, what we’ve learned over the years is that sleep is important,” Rost says.

What’s the minimal amount sleep you need to function properly?

Danielle Tufano

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