Getting six to eight hours sleep a night helps to keep our hearts healthy, according to research presented at the European Society of Cardiology Congress in Munich today.
Researchers from the Onassis Cardiac Surgery Centre in Athens looked at 11 studies, with over a million participants in total. Their results suggest that sleep deprivation and excessive hours in bed should be avoided for optimum heart health.
Six to eight hours sleep
People who slept for less than six hours per night or more than eight hours were at an increased risk of developing or dying from coronary artery disease or a stroke, according to the study.
Emily McGrath, our senior cardiac nurse, said:
"Getting a good night's sleep is important for good health.
"When it comes to our heart and circulatory health, this large study suggests that there may be a sweet spot between getting too much, and getting too little sleep.
"This research needn't trigger alarm bells for those of us partial to a sleepless night or a weekend lie-in.
"However, if you regularly struggle with your sleep, it's an important reminder to speak to your GP.
"As well as having a negative impact on your quality of life, a lack of sleep could also be contributing to heart health problems further down the line."