Background: The connections between long sleep duration and obesity or weight gain warrant further examination. This meta-analysis aimed to evaluate whether long sleep duration was associated with the risk of obesity, weight gain, body mass index (BMI) change or weight change in adults.
Methods: PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, Elsevier Science Direct, Science Online, MEDLINE and CINAHL were searched for English articles published before May 2017. A total of 16 cohort studies (n = 329 888 participants) from 8 countries were included in the analysis. Pooled relative risks (RR) or regression coefficients (β) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated. Heterogeneity and publication bias were tested, and sensitivity analysis was also performed.
Results: We found that long sleep duration was associated with higher risk of obesity (RR [95% CI] = 1.04 [1.00-1.09], P = 0.037), but had no significant associations with weight gain, BMI change or weight change. Long sleep duration increased the risk of weight gain in three situations: among men, in studies with <5 years follow-up, and when sleep duration was 9 or more hours.
Conclusions: Long sleep duration was associated with risk of obesity in adults. More cohort studies with objective measures are needed to confirm this relationship.
Keywords: adults; long sleep duration; meta-analysis; obesity; prospective cohort study.
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