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Obesity (Silver Spring). 2014 Aug;22(8):1786-91. doi: 10.1002/oby.20786. Epub 2014 May 16.

Increased impulsivity in response to food cues after sleep loss in healthy young men.

Author information

1
Department of Neuroscience, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate whether acute total sleep deprivation (TSD) leads to decreased cognitive control when food cues are presented during a task requiring active attention, by assessing the ability to cognitively inhibit prepotent responses.

METHODS:

Fourteen males participated in the study on two separate occasions in a randomized, crossover within-subject design: one night of TSD versus normal sleep (8.5 hours). Following each nighttime intervention, hunger ratings and morning fasting plasma glucose concentrations were assessed before performing a go/no-go task.

RESULTS:

Following TSD, participants made significantly more commission errors when they were presented "no-go" food words in the go/no-go task, as compared with their performance following sleep (+56%; P<0.05). In contrast, response time and omission errors to "go" non-food words did not differ between the conditions. Self-reported hunger after TSD was increased without changes in fasting plasma glucose. The increase in hunger did not correlate with the TSD-induced commission errors.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our results suggest that TSD impairs cognitive control also in response to food stimuli in healthy young men. Whether such loss of inhibition or impulsiveness is food cue-specific as seen in obesity-thus providing a mechanism through which sleep disturbances may promote obesity development-warrants further investigation.

KEYWORDS:

acute total sleep deprivation; cognitive control; food intake; impulsive; inhibition; selective attention; shift work

PMID:
24839251
PMCID:
PMC4314688
DOI:
10.1002/oby.20786
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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