How sleep affects our cholesterol level: High cholesterol and sleep apnea


Does our sleep affect our cholesterol level? Some of you might have this question in your mind. Well yes of course it affects our cholesterol levels. Researches have shown that too little or too much sleep can cause some cholesterol imbalance. Thereupon, these two things are linked. So, what is the link between high cholesterol and sleep apnea?

But first of all, we need to understand that what is cholesterol?

When we hear the word cholesterol” a sudden thought that comes to our mind is some disease or unhealthiness. Well, cholesterol is not awful always. It has some good sides too as it helps in our cells and tissue formation and our metabolism, and also helps in the production of certain essential hormones such as estrogen, progesterone, and bile secretions. Cholesterol has two types first is LDL(low-density lipoprotein) and the second one is HDL(high-density lipoprotein).

We need a low level of LDL than we need HDL. This is because low-density lipoproteins accumulate fat in blood vessels and can block arteries if the level is elevated. HDL on the other hand removes bad cholesterols from blood and helps in certain essential functions of our body.

How Sleep Affects Our Cholesterol Levels?

We have some genes which code for the production of lipoproteins. And also, it has been investigated that insufficient sleep or less than six hours of sleep increases the desire for high cholesterol foods and increases the stress level which is terrible for blood pressure and heart problems. Bad sleeping habits can cause a sudden rise in LDL without even knowing.

Sleeping issues can be caused due to some other reasons too. …

  • Depression or anxiety. …
  • Continuation of certain medications. …
  • Night shift works. …
  • Chronic pain in any part of the body. …
  • Disease like asthma. …
  • Genetic disorder. …
  • Too much bright light or noise. …
  • Overeating or poor diet. …


What Is Sleep Apnea?

It is a severe sleep disorder in which the breathing continues repeatedly and stops. The person who snores loudly and still feels tired all day long, then the chances of sleep apnea are there.

People with overweight and obesity are at high risk of this. The soft tissue connected with the throat and mouth can cause the airway to block and cause continuous and loud snoring.

Sleep apnea in the long- term gives birth to heart problems.

High Cholesterol And Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea causes the loss of good cholesterols from your body. LDL the low-density lipoprotein is the sleep disruption cholesterol.

Studies revealed that the levels of LDL  in people with OSA(obstructive sleep apnea) is quite higher than the person with good quality sleep. And, also it is revealed that the level of HDL lowers.

The other study revealed that cholesterol gene transportation is not that active in people with sleep apnea. It was found in a sleep loss experiment.

Also read: what are sleep disorders 

Good health also includes good quality of sleep at least 8 hours per day. Even a sleep deprivation of one week will bother your metabolism. The carbohydrate metabolism is highly affected due to poor sleep and favors the conditions for type 2 diabetes.

Sleep Aids And Cholesterol

Those who are on sleeping aids may have chronic insomnia and are highly vulnerable to high LDL.  But there are some conflicting results for the people who have insomnia but are not taking sleeping pills and people who are taking them. Sleep aids and cholesterol may or may not be interconnected.

A study from respirologist Nicholas Vozoris, at st. michael’s hospital revealed that the people with some insomniac symptoms do not have higher cholesterol but are more likely in danger of cardio problems.

The results were based on the survey of National Health and Nutrition, basically to improve the health of adults and children in the United States. The survey was a little unique as it included the interview and laboratory testing.

The outcomes of the survey were something like this. …

10.7% of people had a high level of LDL, 16.3% had a high level of triglycerides, 22.1% of people had low levels of good cholesterol (HDL). The results were not too different for the people who had insomnia and those who do not.

Hence, some more researches are needed to solve this conflict, he says.

Medication To Lower The Cholesterol Level

Cholestyramines are used to reduce the higher levels of low-density lipoprotein in the bloodstream. It belongs to the bile acid sequestrants classification of drugs. It helps in minimizing the risks of heart-related problems like stroke, heart attacks, and atherosclerosis in which your arteries are blocked by the accumulation of some fat and plaque which restricts the heart to function properly.

It helps in the production of more bile juice with the help of cholesterol and helps in turning down the bad cholesterol.

Does high cholesterol affect sleep? Well, vice versa may occur undoubtedly. A high level of cholesterol may affect our sleep in the short term initially and can go up to severe. Obesity, diabetes is problems that can cause sleep deprivation.


Health is no less than an asset for everyone. Therefore, it is our responsibility to keep it safe and out of any danger. The most important thing to make a nod is to consume the right diet and being physically active. Hence, there is no evidence of the high level of cholesterol in insomniacs, and still a need for more investigation. But the more important is to treat out the things more naturally you can do.

Some lifestyle changes and daily feeding yourself with good cholesterol foods will prevent you from the dangers of severe cardiovascular issues.

Anjali Ved

Anjali ved is an enthusiastic writer in the health & lifestyle-related niche. She has been writing various blogs and articles on medical niches. Apart from this, she also holds a degree in medicine and an experience of two years.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.