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Health Spotlight: Simple sleeping habits

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends adults get 7-9 hours of sleep a day.

Now, new research from the American College of Cardiology says there are some simple sleep habits to help lengthen your life.

America has a growing sleep problem.

“By 2018, a third of Americans slept lesser, and I guess now, half of the people don’t sleep enough,” said Dr. Jagdish Khubchadani, a professor at Public Health-New Mexico State University.

The American College of Cardiology says poor sleep habits can shorten your life by as much as five years. Researchers found those with healthy sleep habits were 21% less likely to die from heart disease, 19% less likely to die from cancer, and 30% less likely to die for any reason.

So how can you sleep more to live longer? First, get enough sleep.

“We have a prescription for seven hours,” Khubchadani said.

Not getting enough sleep not only increases your risk for health conditions like heart disease and diabetes but can also put you at a greater risk of being in a car crash by 33%.

Experts found taking prescribed sleep medications increased your risk for cancer by 35%, and a Canadian study says instead of sleeping pills, try cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT to fall asleep nine to 30 minutes sooner.

Healthy habits can “ensure that you’re getting a good quality sleep and are at lower risk for health problems,” Khubchadani said.

A study from the American College of Cardiology also found healthy sleep habits affected men more than women. Men who adopted all five healthy sleep habits had their life expectancy expanded by five years, but women who used these sleep habits expanded their life by only two-point-five years.

This story was created from a script aired on WISH-TV. Health Spotlight is presented by Community Health Network.