Impact of sleep duration during pregnancy on the risk of gestational diabetes in the Japan environmental and Children's study (JECS)

Mai Myoga, Mayumi Tsuji, Rie Tanaka, Eiji Shibata, David J. Askew, Yukiyo Aiko, Ayako Senju, Toshihiro Kawamoto, Toru Hachisuga, Shunsuke Araki, Koichi Kusuhara, Seiichi Morokuma, Masafumi Sanefuji

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26 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) has serious effects on both mother and child. Like Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, it is increasing in prevalence world-wide. In addition to obesity, sleep duration has been named an important risk factor. Using a large cohort study, including data from 48,787 participants of the Japan Environment and Children's Study (JECS), we examined the association between sleep duration and both random blood glucose levels and GDM rates during pregnancy. Methods: Random blood glucose levels were measured during pregnancy. GDM diagnosis was based on the results of 75 g oral glucose tolerance test. Additional anthropometric data was collected from questionnaires for statistical analysis. Results: Compared to mothers averaging 7 to < 10 h sleep (reference group), women receiving < 5 h or ≥ 10 h sleep exhibited significantly elevated random blood glucose levels. This was associated with an elevated risk for positive GDM screening (< 5 h sleep: OR 1.17 (0.96-1.44) p = 0.126; ≥10 h sleep: OR 1.13 (1.03-1.25) p = 0.006). Calculating the risk for GDM, women sleeping < 5 h or ≥ 10 h exhibited elevated risks of 1.31-fold and 1.21 respectively. However, this trend was not found to be significant. Conclusions: Sleep is a critical factor in glucose metabolism, with both abnormally long and short sleep duration increasing random blood glucose levels in pregnant women. Moreover, the risk for positive GDM screening increases significantly with elevated sleep, ≥10 h per night. These findings are promising because they support the idea that sleep duration is a modifiable risk factor, and can be focused upon to improve health and pregnancy outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Article number483
JournalBMC Pregnancy and Childbirth
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 9 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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