student profile: Ms Mitchel Bones


Thesis work

Thesis title: Dietary patterns and sleep: Effects of plant and animal origin diet on sleep health in healthy adults

Supervisors: Mark HALAKI , Vicki FLOOD , Chin Moi CHOW

Thesis abstract:

�p�Sleep is well known to play a vital role in promoting physical health, longevity and emotional well-being of humans. According to sleep statistics of the Australian National sleep foundation(NSF), sleep is recognised as a vital sign for health risk thus affecting body temperature, pulse rate, respiration rate and blood pressure. Therefore, sleep is an important indicator of overall health and well-being. Perusal of literature suggest that vegan diet promotes health benefits in terms of reduced risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancer as well as increased longevity, and therefore diet could possibly affect sleep.Research on the effect of plant and animal origin diet on sleep health is limited but, hypothetically a balanced diet can act as a natural sleeping aid because plant diets contain the unique natural compounds such as tryptophan which can maintain one of the most important brain chemicals for regulating the sleep-wake cycle, serotonin. Yet, whether plant origin diets would improve or cause detriment to sleep patterns and sleep-wake 24-hourly rhythm is unknown. Therefore, we decided to conduct a study on the effect of exposure to plant and animal origin diets on sleep-health with a clear aim.The aim of this study is to determine whether replacement of protein and fat from animal sources in omnivore diet (OD) with same proportion of protein and fat from plant origin in vegan diet adjusted (VDA) while maintain the overall energy intake has an effect on sleep pattern and their day-to-day sleep-wake cycle in healthy adults The primary objectives of the study are to 1) examine the effects of transition (acute or habitual) from OD to VDA and vice versa on sleep and 2) to examine the effects of exposure (post habitual) to VDA and OD and vice versa on sleep. The secondary objectives of the study are to examine the response measures associated with the sleep outcomes of OD and VDA diets. These measures include fasting blood glucose level, blood pressure, mood and alertness, and working memory.To achieve the above objectives, a crossover experimental study of two-month duration with an estimated sample size of 30 is designed. This design minimises unexplained variation and aims to achieve a high level of precision with available resources. All measures will be undertaken at six study time points: baseline, two weeks, three weeks, five weeks, six weeks and eight weeks. Prior to the empirical work, an intensive and extensive review of the literature will be performed in the form of a systematic review and meta-analyses. Qualitative and quantitative data will be collected from the experiment conducted in the Sleep Research Facility at the Cumberland campus. Categorical data analysis for classification of observations in relation to different sleep pattern and diet using the variables and attributes of age, sex, BMI, income status, education. Age will also be considered as a covariate in the final analysis. Autocorrelation coefficients for evaluating sleep wake rhythms for 24hrs will be computed. Analysis of Variance and comparison of mean will be performed to compare diets.The present study is an original, comparative study designed to examine how plant and animal origin diets with same proportions of fat and protein similar to animal origin diet affect sleep health in healthy adults. From the outcomes of this study, it is possible to assess whether the effects of exposure to a vegan diet regimen would be beneficial or detrimental to the human sleep health. Should vegan diet prove positive for sleep, then these findings would suggest future testing in people with insomnia and depression, since extensive research has consistently shown that sleep plays a vital role in promoting physical health, longevity and emotional well-being.�/p�

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