DETROIT (WWJ) – America’s growing waistline may be feeding an epidemic of sleep apnea, according to a new study.

University of Wisconsin researchers say sleep apnea cases have spiked at least 55 percent in the past two decades reports WWJ Health Reporter Sean Lee.

That means up to five million people may not be getting enough sleep because of their weight.

People with sleep apnea often have trouble staying in deep sleep because their throats close, which blocks their airways.

That causes them partially awaken to start breathing correctly again. People with sleep apnea often don’t even realize they’re waking up and may become very sleepy during the day.

Obesity experts say losing weight often resolves the condition, but if you’re not sleeping well, you may need to be evaluated and treated if you have sleep apnea, while you’re losing weight.

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