Snoring Linked to an Increased Risk of Cancer
New research shows that snoring increases your cancer risk five fold. Snoring and other types of sleep disordered breathing (SDP) deprives the body of enough oxygen and low blood oxygen is linked to the development of cancerous tumors.
The prevention of snoring could be worth its weight in gold in terms of cancer prevention. Researchers are looking at more than 1,500 people with snoring problems that had been present for more than 22 years.
Those with the most severe snoring problems were 4.8 times more likely to develop cancerous tumors while those with moderate SDB were at double the risk. Those with only minor sleep problems were at only a 10 percent increased risk, according to researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, as reported on The Telegraph.
The Connection Between SDP and Cancer
Obstructive sleep apnea was by far the most common sleep disorder--a disorder also associated with obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart attacks. Researchers tested whether it was just overall bad health which caused SDP, and as a result, cancer. But even when the results were adjusted for factors including age, weight, sex, and smoking, the link was still present.
According to the Telegraph, “[l]aboratory studies have also shown that intermittent hypoxia - or low oxygen levels - promotes tumour growth in mice with skin cancer. Lack of oxygen stimulates the generation of blood vessels that nourish tumours, a process known as angiogenesis”
Snoring is caused by a number of different factors including nasal conditions, swollen tissues due to allergies, upper respiratory infections, deviated septum, and sleep apnea. It can also be caused by the muscles in the tongue becoming too relaxed during sleep due to drinking alcohol and drowsy medications.
You can reduce snoring by achieving a healthy weight, sleeping on your side, using nasal strips, treating congestion in your nasal passages with a neti pot, and avoiding too much booze.