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  The Minority/ Black Health Blog  

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Lack of Sleep Can Make Cancer More Aggressive

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Everyone knows how important it is to get a good night's sleep. But what many people do not know is how the body responds to a continued lack of sleep. Not getting enough rest may lead to serious health problems. Even going to bed on time but waking up frequently results in poor sleep quality and can affect your health.

Less Sleep Causes Bigger Tumors

Researchers recently discovered some interesting results that demonstrate how important sleep is with cancer. By experimenting with mice injected with tumor cells, sleep deprivation experiments showed some alarming results. The mice whose sleep was constantly interrupted during the experiment had tumors that were twice the size as those of the mice who were allowed to sleep peacefully.

Sleep Affects Your Immune System

What the experiment seems to prove is that sleep is important for the proper functioning of the body's immune system. Not only can altering sleep make the immune system less effective, but it can make cancer cells more aggressive.

Poor sleep can alter the immune system in such as way that it can change how the immune system reacts to cancer. According to Dr. David Gozal who directed the study, "It's not the tumor, it's the immune system. Fragmented sleep changes how the immune system deals with cancer in ways that make the disease more aggressive."
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