Teenagers who stay up all night playing video games could be at higher risk of developing diabetes, a new study has found.
Psychiatrists from the University of Pittsburgh found that teenagers who got an average of six hours of sleep or less each night had high levels of insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes.
"High levels of insulin resistance can lead to the development of diabetes," lead researcher Karen Matthews said.
"We found that if teens that normally get six hours of sleep per night get one extra hour of sleep, they would improve insulin resistance by 9 percent."
The study — published in the October issue of the journal SLEEP — examined the sleeping patterns and insulin resistance of 245 teenagers.
It found a correlation between hours of sleep and insulin resistance. Young people who slept for seven or more hours a night had lower levels of insulin resistance, and thus a lower risk of developing diabetes, while those who slept for six hours or less had higher levels of insulin resistance, and higher risk of diabetes.
Other factors like race, age, gender, obesity and body mass index did not appear to impact insulin resistance.
This was a landmark finding as previously obesity was thought to greatly increase risk of diabetes.