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30% of Canadian men not getting enough sleep, says study

A new study on men's health says that one third of Canadian men are sleep deprived, making them vulnerable to physical and health problems.

A lack of sleep could lead to serious health complications, so put the iphone to bed

The study identifies Netflix, television and late-night snacking as the major culprits preventing men from getting enough sleep. (Tlka Gregory/Flickr)

A new study by the Canadian Men's Health Foundation says one third of Canadian men are sleep-deprived, clocking in four-to-six hours of sleep every night instead of the recommended seven to eight.

The study included a survey of 500 Canadian men between the ages of 30 and 49.

Nearly half of the subjects in the study said they woke up feeling tired instead of refreshed.

Wayne Hartrick, president of the Canadian Men's Health Foundation, told CBC's Early Edition that sleep deprivation can be a factor in a number of health problems.

"For example, people who get less than five hours of sleep a night are generally about 60 per cent increased risk of a heart attack over the course of their lifespan," he said.

Not sleeping? A new study says in many cases technology is partially to blame. (CBC)

"People who get less than six hours sleep are 50 per cent more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes, or 33 per cent more likely to develop prostate cancer," he added.

Hartrick says there needs to be more awareness of sleep disorders like sleep apnea, "which can a big factor in interrupting your sleep but it's also a big trigger in erectile dysfunction."

One reason why men are getting less shut eye?

Hartrick blames technology.

"A lot of what we're seeing in the survey is that technology is a big part of what's cutting into people's sleep. Watching shows, browsing on the internet," he said.

"These things didn't exist 100 years ago. When the country went dark, you went to bed. Now you have all these things which are stimulants."

Tips for better sleeping

Hartrick recommends incorporating small changes to get a better night's sleep. Here are some of his tips.

  • Avoid anything that would be considered a stimulant: Internet, television, coffee, cigarettes, tea, even exercise  — although sex isn't considered a stimulant in this case.
  • Make sure you finish eating about an hour before you go to bed.
  • Hartrick puts his phone on airplane mode: "That way I can still have it for my alarm, [but I'm not] tempted to keep browsing Facebook, keep looking at those messages, and catching up on things."

With files from The Early Edition.

To hear the full story listen to the audio labelled: Canadian men not getting enough sleep: study