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Healthy ZZZs: Five Benefits of Naps in Light of National Napping Day

By Alexandra Gratereaux
Posted On Mar 16, 2016
Healthy ZZZs: Five Benefits of Naps in Light of National Napping Day

National Napping Day is once again upon us. In light of the heart-warming day, New You has put together a list of the benefits you can reap from getting a few extra ZZZs throughout the day.

  • Reduces blood pressure and heart attacks

According to The Telegraph, Greek researchers discovered that taking a nap mid-day or after can greatly assist in decreasing blood pressure, after they did a study involving over 400 middle-aged men and women.

“Midday naps seem to lower blood pressure levels and may probably also decrease the number of required antihypertensive medic [drugs],” Dr. Manolis Kallistratos, the head researcher told the daily.

  • Charges up the brain’s batteries

Scientists who focus on sleep patterns believe that taking a nap for an hour or longer can recharge the brain and be as useful as an eight-hour night’s sleep.

  • Increases creativity

Researchers encourage managers and supervisors to allow their colleagues to take nap breaks anywhere between 30 and 90minutes.

“It’s only since the industrial revolution we have been obsessed with squeezing all our sleep into the night rather than having one or two sleeps through the day,” says Vincent Walsh, who is a professor of human brain research at University College London.

“It’s best to give your brain downtime. I have a nap every afternoon,” he adds.

  • Reduces Stress

In Spain, where a siesta (as they call a nap) is mandatory, scientists believe a quick power nap after lunch can improve alertness and memory and overall relaxation. The scientists, who are part of the Spanish Society of Primary Care Physicians, suggest the nap should be from 15 to 30 minutes.

  • Reduces Mistakes

The NSA reported that a NASA study on sleep-deprived military pilots and astronauts found that when these individuals took a 40-minute nap, it improved their overall performance by a whopping 34 percent and alertness by 100 percent.