Insomnia, Menopause Speed Up Aging
Two recent studies shed some light on the effects of insomnia and menopause—both of which speed up the aging process in women and increase the risk for age-related health problems. The average age of menopause is 51, and once a woman has gone through menopause, she ages about 6% faster, according to a study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The other study—published in Biological Psychiatry—showed that insomnia symptoms, including difficulty falling or staying asleep, restless sleep, and waking early, increase a woman’s biological age by about 2 years.
Menopause and insomnia increase the rate at which the body’s cells age. To measure this process, researchers used a device called an epigenic clock that detects and monitors genetic changes. They then compared the participants’ biological age to their chronological age.
Results of the study provide even more reasons to live a healthy lifestyle and get enough sleep. According to researchers, the epigenic clock may be used one day to help develop ways to slow down the biologic aging process.
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