Sleep is essential for a healthy heart.
People who don't sleep enough are at higher risk for cardiovascular disease and heart disease; regardless of age, weight, and exercise habits. Getting enough good quality sleep is extremely important.
Researchers have found that sleeping too little causes disruptions in our underlying heather and biological processes such as metabolism, blood pressure regulation, and inflammation reduction.
One of the reasons we know how vital sleep is to the heart is that patients with sleep apnea often have compromised heart health. This is because, without a long period of rest, our bodies don't have the extended periods of time in which heart rate and blood pressure are lowered. Without this period, the heart is under more pressure for more time per day. Over time, this can lead to higher blood pressure during the day and a greater chance of cardiovascular problems.
One study has found that over an eight-year period, people with severe sleep apnea were 58% more likely to develop heart failure than people without the disorder. But it doesn't take a severe underlying sleep disorder to see effects on the heart. Poor sleeping, in general, can put you at risk as well.
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