High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Attenuated Insulin Resistance Induced by Sleep Deprivation in Healthy Males
TL;DR: The study investigated the effects of HIIT on insulin resistance induced by sleep deprivation. Recent evidence found the correlation between sleep deprivation and carbohydrate metabolism relating to insulin resistance. The study took 11 healthy male volunteers and separated them into four groups: regular sleep (RS), sleep deprived (SD), HIIT training followed by regular sleep (HIIT + RS), and HIIT training followed by sleep deprivation (HIIT + SD). They then compared each group’s outcome measures and assessed their findings. Based on the data obtained from this study, HIIT was effective in reversing the negative effects of sleep deprivation on glucose metabolism and improved blood levels of FFAs, glucose, and insulin.
Analysis: This finding is useful as it may provide a key for some clinicians and coaches to keep in mind if ever their patients or athletes find that sleep deprivation might be hindering their progress or performance. Although the study didn’t specifically explain the difference in the physiological effects of HIIT and non-HIIT sessions on sleep deprivation, future research should determine whether the effects can also be observed in regular exercise and compare each method’s degree of effectiveness on sleep debt factors. Also, it would be interesting to determine HIIT’s reliability on long-term, continuous sleep deprivation. Will there be dimished returns from HIIT in consecutive sleep debt days?
While the data and result seem promising, it is still unadvisable to rely solely on HIIT to counter its negative effects. There are many other factors and physiological changes that go into sleep debt and this data is only limited to the outcome measures. For now the best application of this study into practice is as a short-term compensation during busy training days. The best way to reverse sleep debt is still, of course, getting adequate hours of rest.
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