Could This Be One Possible Approach to a Sleep Apnea Cure?

Let me be crystal clear on something. When I say sleep apnea cure, I DO NOT mean magic pills, potions, or gadgets.

Rather, the dictionary says a cure “relieves the symptoms of a condition.” One of the major symptoms of sleep apnea is blockage in the throat that restricts breathing.

So could one possible sleep apnea cure be as simple as taking a daily walk?

Results from a small study certainly point in this promising direction.

Taking a daily walk could be a sleep apnea cure.

Here's what the researchers discovered

The researchers were looking into a possible sleep apnea cause. They write: "Our study has given rise to several novel findings that provide insights into the pathogenesis of OSA [development of obstructive sleep apnea], and suggest new approaches to [sleep apnea] prevention and therapy."

The study (published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Volume 179, 2009) examined 23, non-obese healthy men who were suspected of having obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

This is interesting because as I mentioned in my article, 23 Dangerous or Unhealthy Sleep Apnea Symptoms, obesity is a major risk factor for sleep apnea. However, estimates are that anywhere from 30 to 40% of those with obstructive apnea are thin or not obese.

So what could be a possible sleep apnea cause in these non-obese men?

The answer is...

Prolonged periods of sitting during the day.

Researchers said, "An important implication of our observations is that sedentary living may predispose to OSA not only by promoting obesity, but also by causing dependent fluid accumulation in the legs, which can shift...into the neck overnight."

This increases neck circumference and creates the pressure and blockage in the throat that is responsible for episodes of no breathing (apneas) and hypopneas (shallow or reduced breathing). By the way, the apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) measures the severity of sleep apnea by measuring the
numbers of these apneas and hypopneas.

Also, as researchers pointed out...

Humans evolved to walk on two legs and gravity leads to fluids pooling up in the legs. Fortunately, physical activity helps to relieve the pressure of these fluids.

The problem is, in modern society, where people sit for long periods of time in a cubicle at work...at home watching TV...or driving a truck or taxi...this fluid pressure is not relieved.

Researchers also found that the longer someone sat during the day, the more severe sleep apnea was at night.

4 things this means if you're
looking for a sleep apnea cure

walking as a cure for sleep apnea
  1. One cure for sleep apnea may be as simple as getting up and walking around once an hour to prevent this fluid buildup. The scientists wrote, "Manipulation of this fluid displacement may therefore provide a novel approach to prevention and therapy of OSA in some non obese subjects."

  2. It's well known that if you want to know how to fall asleep at night, daily exercise during the morning or early afternoon can help.

  3. It's also known that one of the remedies for reducing sleep apnea symptoms is exercise, even without losing weight. In one study, researchers concluded: "A prescription for mild to moderate exercise is safe in the management of sleep apnea..." (Study titled Physical Exercise As An Adjunct Therapy In Sleep Apnea and published in Sleep Breath 2000;4:173-176.)

  4. Here's another benefit. Many people can't stand sleep apnea machines, otherwise known as cpap machines. Continuous positive airway pressure (cpap) supplies pressurized air to the person sleeping to prevent apneas from occurring. Therefore, an active lifestyle may be an important component for a sleep apnea cure or treatment in these cases too.

Of course...

...an active lifestyle may be difficult to get started on because a patient diagnosed with sleep apnea is often always tired.

That's why getting help from a sleep disorder specialist is so essential. He or she can help treat your symptoms of sleep apnea and get them under control. Perhaps first using cpap for sleep apnea. This will help you breathe better, reduce nighttime awakenings, and sleep better so you have more energy during the day for exercise.

And talk to your doctor before starting any exercise program. You need to know what kind of condition you're in before you start.

Two final thoughts about treating sleep apnea

  1. Just as with anything, sleep apnea cures or treatments may work for some of the people some of the time, but no sleep apnea cure will work for all of the people all of the time. The only thing that really matters is will it work for you. Why not take a friend or your dog for a daily walk and find out?

  2. How can what I wrote in this article apply to men and women who are obese? You'll see when you read what sleep authority Sudhansu Chokroverty, MD, said in my article on sleep apnea cure and weight loss.

And for help with weight loss...

Click this Enjoying Weight Loss image for the number one key to losing weight and keeping it off.

This is surprising! Works for 90% of the people who do it. Might help you move away from using a cpap machine. (Clicking image opens a new browser window.)

lose weight with hypnosis

Here are more articles you will find helpful

12 Healthy Weight Loss Tips

What Is Sleep Apnea?

Hidden Chemicals That Make People Fat (A Back Issue Of My Sleep Chat Newsletter)

Herbs For Sleep Apnea Symptoms

Accident Report: Sleep Apnea Cause Of Massive Train Wreck

Sleep Apnea and Weight Loss: 7 Tips

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