Indexed on: 30 Jul '11Published on: 30 Jul '11Published in: Obesity
Previous research in lean subjects has found lower leptin levels associated with shorter sleep duration. Since leptin levels are higher and some of the actions of leptin are impaired in obese individuals, one cannot assume that sleep will be similarly associated with leptin in obese individuals. The aim of this paper was to examine the cross-sectional association between habitual sleep duration and quality and plasma leptin levels in a sample of 80 obese men and premenopausal women aged 18-50 years. Leptin levels (ng/ml) were assayed on a fasting blood sample taken in the morning. We calculated a relative leptin level by dividing leptin by body fat percentage. Sleep duration and sleep efficiency were measured by 2 weeks of wrist actigraphy and respiratory disturbance index (RDI), a measure of sleep disordered breathing, was assessed by a portable screening device on a single night. Mean leptin levels and body fat percentage were higher in women than men (P < 0.001), however, mean RDI was higher in men (P = 0.01). There were no significant associations between relative leptin level and any of the sleep measures, including sleep duration, sleep efficiency, and sleep disordered breathing. There was also no difference between men and women in the association between sleep and leptin. In conclusion, contrary to what has been reported in other studies, measures of sleep duration and quality were not associated with leptin levels in our sample of obese adults.