6 Reasons Why Napping Should Be Part Of Your Daily Ritual
We live in a society today in which napping is usually only for children, or someone that is extremely lazy. The stigma that napping is for the lazy is starting to be investigated by researchers. Some are even saying that taking a nap each day has an enormous benefit to your health. Here are 6 reasons why napping should be part of your daily ritual.
1. Napping Can Help You Live Longer
According to a study published by The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM) researchers found that napping can reduce stress, reverse negative health effects from lack of sleep, and even strengthen your immune system.
This study revealed that the men that did NOT take naps during the experiment had 2.5-fold increase in norepinephrine (a hormone that is involved in stress, increased heart rate, blood sugar and blood pressure). The men that were able to take naps during the experiment had normal levels of norepinephrine, meaning less stress, a more stable heart rate, and better overall health.
2. Napping Improves Your Memory
According to a blog published by Harvard Health Publications Online researchers found that napping and dreaming about puzzles, mazes, or daily tasks can substantially increase your memory and performance.
In this experiment people learned how to navigate a complex maze. Once these volunteers learned the maze some of them were allowed to take a 90 minute nap, while the others had to stay awake. Upon completion of the maze a second time the study concluded that only the volunteers that dreamed about the maze during their nap actually did better in navigating the complex maze.
3. Napping Increases Your Alertness & Productivity
According to a study ran by NASA researchers found that taking naps leads to an increase in productivity and alertness, while dramatically decreasing the probability of accidents.
In this study NASA monitored sleepy military pilots and astronauts. They found out that the pilots/astronauts that nap performed 34% better, and were 100% more alert than those who don’t nap. This increased performance/alertness enables pilots to make less mistakes, work more efficiently, and decrease serious accidents.
4. Napping Will Help You Stay Calm
A study ran by The University of Berkeley found that taking naps in which you reach REM will in fact help calm your anxiety.
In this experiment subjects were shown faces that expressed both fear and anger at 2 different times during the day. The subjects were shown these faces once at 12pm and again at 6pm. Each subject that did not take a nap before seeing the faces again exhibited increased signs of irritation. Subjects that took a 90 minute nap before seeing the faces again displayed no signs of increased irritation.
5. Napping Takes Your Creativity Up A Notch
A report released by The National Geographic determined that when you take naps regularly you will notice boosts of creativity.
After a group of researchers decided to monitor the brain activity of daily nappers they discovered something very interesting. During a nap that you reach REM sleep, the right side of your brain (side most related to creativity) will experience burst of activity. This increased brain activity allowed subjects to improve their performance when solving creative word problems.
6. Napping Reduces Heart Disease
In 2007 a report released by Archives of Internal Medicine stated people that take at least 3 midday naps each week are 37% less likely to die from heart disease.
This study took more than 23,000 Greek adults and monitored them over an average of 6 years. After the study was complete it was found that people who took frequent naps are 34% less likely to die from heart disease. While the people who napped the most were 37% less likely to die from heart disease. So if you want a stronger heart, start napping!