Mechanistic Role Of Sleep In Cardiovascular And Metabolic Diseases

Elizabeth F. Rasmussen, Suzanne B. Gorovoy, Michael A. Grandner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In this chapter, sleep is contextualised as a proposed mechanism in cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. First, the multidimensional nature of sleep and the various unidimensional models for the assessment of sleep in cardiometabolic research are compared, highlighting several important caveats to the field of study. Two key associations that motivated interest in sleep as a proposed mechanism in cardiovascular health are reviewed: (1) habitual sleep and mortality and (2) sleep apnoea and cardiovascular events. The authors then discuss the nuances of measuring sleep as part of the Lifes Essential 8 framework. Behavioural and physiological pathways between sleep health and cardiometabolic health are proposed and the authors hypothesise that a culmination of impacts results in changes to a wide range of complex behavioural and physiologic processes that affect cardiometabolic health. Specifically, food intake and exercise are evaluated as pathways between sleep health and obesity; the roles of sleep duration, insufficient sleep and insomnia are evaluated in hypertension and sympathetic activation; the role of sleep in dyslipidaemia is evaluated; and sleep and sleep disorders are examined in the context of type 2 diabetes. Lastly, the authors highlight clinical considerations and propose future directions for research: (1) mechanistic studies linking sleep and outcomes to help delineate the specific molecular and behavioural pathways involved, (2) studies examining the role of sleep and cardiometabolic health in the context of a broad range of individual, social and societal factors and (3) studies to clarify the causal pathways linking various aspects of sleep health and various aspects of cardiometabolic health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in the Psychobiology of Sleep and Circadian Rhythms
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781003830863
ISBN (Print)9781032284644
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • General Health Professions
  • General Medicine


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