If you’re in good health and take catnaps during the day, here’s some good news: Grabbing some shut-eye in advance of bedtime once or twice each week may lower your risk of cardiovascular events, according to a new study published in the journal Heart, reports CNN.
For the inquiry, researchers from the University Hospital of Lausanne in Switzerland examined the link between how often and how long a person napped and his or her risk of both fatal and nonfatal cardiovascular disease problems.
After tracking more than 3,400 individuals ages 35 to 75 for more than five years, scientists concluded that folks who napped for five minutes to an hour one to two times each week experienced a nearly 50% decrease in their risk for heart attack, stroke or heart failure compared with those who didn’t snatch 40 winks. (However, researchers found no link between napping more frequently or longer.)
Naveed Sattar, PhD, a professor of metabolic medicine at the University of Glasgow in England who wasn’t involved in the study, noted that individuals who napped less often during the week seemed to follow healthier, more organized lifestyles while those who napped every day were more likely to be suffering from undiagnosed illness.
“I don’t think one can work out from this work whether ‘intentional’ napping on one or two days per week improves heart health, so no one should take from this that napping is a way to lessen their heart attack risk,” Sattar said.
Sattar suggested that it’s far better to get a good night’s rest regularly and to adhere to a healthy lifestyle as experts usually advise.
For similar coverage, read “Snoring and Sleep Apnea Linked to Greater Risk for Heart Damage” and “Lack of Sleep Among Teens May Lead to Future Heart Troubles.”