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J Nutr Health Aging. 2007 May-Jun;11(3):242-8.

The effects of an intensive lifestyle modification program on sleep and stress disorders.

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College of Health and Human Performance, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602-2214, Italy.



To determine if a lifestyle change program can modify behavior to reduce sleep and stress disorders.


Analyses are based on 2,624 individuals aged 30 to 80 years from the Rockford, Illinois metropolitan area who completed a lifestyle evaluation at baseline and again after four weeks, following participation in a 40-hour educational course given over a four-week period. Participants receive instruction on the importance of making better lifestyle choices related to making long-term improvements in nutrition and physical activity and they learn ways to improve sleep and reduce stress in their lives.


Significant percent decreases were observed in the number experiencing selected sleep or stress disorders from baseline to four weeks later for "sleeps restlessly" (-59%), "suffers from insomnia" (-64%), "feels under pressure" (-37%), "easily emotionally upset" (-52%), and "feels fearful or depressed" (-61%). Experiencing a selected sleep or stress disorder after four weeks among those who had the disorder at baseline was significantly more likely in those not physically active and/or not having lowered their BMI after four weeks. Changes in alcohol consumption and smoking did not significantly contribute to changes in the disorders. Those who failed to lower their coffee/tea use after four weeks were significantly more likely to have a sleep disorder and be easily emotionally upset.


Changes in lifestyle behaviors after attending an educational program significantly reduced sleep and stress disorders in as little as four weeks, primarily explained by decreasing BMI and/or increasing exercise.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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