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Smoking, Screen-Based Sedentary Behavior, and Diet Associated with Habitual Sleep Duration and Chronotype: Data from the UK Biobank



Sleep duration has been implicated in the etiology of obesity but less is known about the association between sleep and other behavioral risk factors for cardiovascular disease.


The aim of this study was to examine the associations among sleep duration, chronotype, and physical activity, screen-based sedentary behavior, tobacco use, and dietary intake.


Regression models were used to examine sleep duration and chronotype as the predictors and cardiovascular risk factors as outcomes of interest in a cross-sectional sample of 439,933 adults enrolled in the UK Biobank project.


Short sleepers were 45 % more likely to smoke tobacco than adequate sleepers (9.8 vs. 6.9 %, respectively). Late chronotypes were more than twice as likely to smoke tobacco than intermediate types (14.9 vs. 7.4 %, respectively). Long sleepers reported 0.61 more hours of television per day than adequate sleepers. Early chronotypes reported 0.20 fewer daily hours of computer use per day than intermediate chronotypes. Early chronotypes had 0.25 more servings of fruit and 0.13 more servings of vegetables per day than late chronotypes.


Short and long sleep duration and late chronotype are associated with greater likelihood of cardiovascular risk behaviors. Further work is needed to determine whether these findings are maintained in the context of objective sleep and circadian estimates, and in more diverse samples. The extent to which promoting adequate sleep duration and earlier sleep timing improves heart health should also be examined prospectively.

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This research was conducted using the UK Biobank Resource. Funding was provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Health and Society Scholars program at the University of Pennsylvania.

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Correspondence to Freda Patterson PhD.

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Authors’ Statement of Conflict of Interest and Adherence to Ethical Standards Authors Freda Patterson, Susan Kohl Malone, Alicia Lozano, Michael A. Grandner, and Alexandra L. Hanlon declare that they have no conflict of interest. All procedures, including the informed consent process, were conducted in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional and national) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 2000.

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Patterson, F., Malone, S.K., Lozano, A. et al. Smoking, Screen-Based Sedentary Behavior, and Diet Associated with Habitual Sleep Duration and Chronotype: Data from the UK Biobank. ann. behav. med. 50, 715–726 (2016).

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  • Sleep duration
  • Chronotype
  • Physical activity
  • Sedentary behavior
  • Tobacco use
  • Dietary intake