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Study shows people with insomnia were more likely to suffer from a stroke, heart disease

If you aren't already convinced that a good night's rest can pay dividends for your health, perhaps new research will do the trick. Researchers found that adequate sleep can help prevent heart disease and stroke.

A new study found that people who reported symptoms of insomnia were 18% more likely to report having a stroke, heart attack or other cardiovascular diseases.

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The researchers looked at nearly 490,000 participants in China who had no history of stroke or heart disease, then tracked them for about a decade. The participants, who were on average 51 years old, tracked if they had three symptoms of insomnia at least three times a week or more.

That included: waking up too early, trouble falling back asleep or trouble staying awake during the day.

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In the 10-year period, the researchers recorded more than 100,00 incidents of stroke, heart attack and similar diseases among the participants.

"These results suggest that if we can target people who are having trouble sleeping with behavioral therapies, it's possible that we could reduce the number of cases of stroke, heart attack and other diseases later down the line," Dr. Liming Li, who wrote the study said.

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Li said the study shows an association between sleep and heart disease and strokes, but it doesn’t prove cause and effect.

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