(CNN) – Working nights is extremely tough on the body. Researchers have long known that shift workers have an increased risk for type 2 diabetes, and now a new study from Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital may explain why.
According to Physiologist Christopher Morris, PHD, “We all have this internal body clock that primes us for consuming food during the daytime and to be fasting during the nighttime hours. But in shift workers what happens is they actually consume food during the nighttime hours when the body clock is sending them signals which would not be so helpful for processing nutrients.”
Morris explains that staying up all night raises blood sugar, and this new study finds when a meal is eaten at night, blood sugars rise significantly more than if the exact same meal was eaten in the morning. “So people should not only consider what they’re eating [butt to] but people should also be also thinking about when they are actually consuming their food.”
It’s important to mention this was a small study that tracked 14 individuals. Researchers in Boston are also studying whether chronic shift workers ever really adapt enough to protect their health.
For more information about preventing diabetes, talk to your health care provider.