BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Researchers at LSU's Pennington Biomedical Research Center think sleeping in a tent could help people with type 2 diabetes better control their blood sugar. The key is the oxygen level inside the tent.
"There's actually a lower prevalence of obesity and type 2 diabetes at higher altitudes," Dr. Kara Marlatt explained. The postdoctoral researcher is recruiting overweight adults for this study.
To simulate higher altitude, Marlatt uses a special tent and machine that safely lowers the oxygen level. It's the same tent athletes use to train for better performance.
Participants will spend 14 nights sleeping in the tent inside their own home to see if there's an improvement in their insulin sensitivity.
"Our main goal for this study is to learn more about novel ways to treat type 2 diabetes," Marlatt said.
Researchers will set up the tent using the participant's own mattress. Sleeping inside will not feel any different, and leaving the tent for a bathroom break is allowed. Results from this study could lead to new ways to control blood sugar.
"Some things that we could benefit from just doing while we sleep might improve outcomes for type 2 diabetes patients," Marlatt added.
And there's another benefit besides better sugar control. Those who complete the study will earn $350 in compensation.
Here are the requirements:
- Age: 20-65 years old
- BMI 30-45 kg/m2
- You have type 2 diabetes and have been diagnosed within the last 15 years
- You do not have sleep apnea
- You have a partner or a household member (= 18 yrs of age) who will be in close proximity to you during each night that you stay in the tent