Can sleep disturbance cause liver issues?

Did you know that sleep disturbances can cause liver issues? Let us check out the details of how sleep and liver issues are interconnected.

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease refers to the presence of fatty cells inside the liver. This can become troublesome when the presence of these fatty cells limits the proper functioning of the liver, causing the build-up of toxic waste in the body. 

You may not be able to identify the condition in the initial stages however, this alarming sign during sleep could indicate your liver is at risk. 

What research has to say about sleep disturbance?

According to the journal Nature and Science of Sleep, sleep disturbances are well known for causing liver issues. The common cause of waking up between 1 am to 4 am is a liver problem. 

Our body’s clock rhythm is our master internal clock which works following the external clock- sunrise and sunset. This helps all organs and internal biological systems to work harmoniously, effectively, and efficiently. 

It is during the period between 1 and 3 am that the liver works its hardest to cleanse and detoxify the body while we sleep. So, if your liver is slow and stagnant from an accumulation of fat during the liver cleansing (1 and 4 am), the body will try to allocate more energy to detox and cleanse the body. This will trigger your nervous system to wake up. 

Types of sleep disturbance 

Sleep disturbance generally tends to affect about 60-80% of patients with the chronic liver disease according to the research. This can be in form of: 

  • Insomnia 
  • Reduced sleep efficiency 
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Restless leg syndrome 

Causes of liver issues leading to sleep disturbance 

The risk factor of liver disease leading to sleep disturbance is as follows- 

  • Being overweight or obese 
  • Pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes 
  • High level of fat storage in the liver 
  • Increase of cholesterol or triglycerides in the blood 

Other causes of sleep disturbance 

It has been proven in many medical journals that geriatric age groups or elderly people may experience early-morning awakenings due to changes in the body’s circadian rhythm with age. According to the Sleep Foundation, there is a tendency for people to wake up at night due to the following reasons which are as follows- Nocturia, anxiety, and other conditions also could lead to age-related problems. 

The main reason behind sleep disturbances is lifestyle disorders which need to be rectified to treat sleep issues from the core.

Tags : #sleepdisturbance #liverissues #liverproblems #soundsleep #smitakumar #medicircle #myhealth

About the Author


Dr. Rati Parwani

Dr Rati Parwani is a Practising Professional BHMS Doctor having experience of 8 years in the medical field. Her approach towards each and every patient is the utmost professional with high standards of practice. She has nurtured her writing skills and proves it as an asset to her professionalism. She has experience in content writing and likes her writing ethical and scientific-based.

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