Napping is already a pretty popular activity with the young, old, tired, and hungover, but if you’re avoiding them out of fear of being lazy you might want to think again. Naps can actually be super beneficial and actually make you more productive. Here’s what happens.
Your Brain Really Appreciates It
When compared to watching TV, taking a 45 minute nap can increase your ability to recall information. In fact it’s five times as effective. Sometimes you just need a little break from all that deep thinking/zoning out in front of reruns to get things back up to speed. Other studies done on pilots and astronauts have found that naps can increase alertness levels by 100 percent and performance by 34 percent. The alertness can occur right after the nap and last for a few hours following. If you’re one of those people who feel groggy following a nap, limit it to 20 minutes so you don’t go to deep.
Naps Can Lower Blood Pressure
Daily life can raise our blood pressure just from stress alone, and naps are one way to help keep it in check. Keeping the blood pressure at a healthy rate can decrease your risks of all kinds of cardiovascular problems including irregular heartbeat, stroke, heart attacks, etc.
It Can Reverse the Negative Effects of Skipping Sleep
Missing out on sleep just isn’t good for you, and it never will be. A bad night’s sleep can immediately effect your stress levels in the body, make you feel more hungry, and cut down on your mental function. But taking naps gives your body the opportunity to fix some of that right away which can actually help keep your immune system at a properly functioning level. Napping can stop the hormonal chaos that tired bodies go through that causes them to crave high energy carbs and sugars. So if you stayed up too late last night, getting in a nap might actually be beneficial to your waistline.
Naps Can Be Mood Boosting
Waking up from a nap feeling good isn’t just because it feels indulgent, giving the body some time to rest actually changes your serotonin levels which make you feel good. Think of it like a mini vacation or visit to the spa so it feels like an easy way to make an escape. Naps can also help increase your sex drive and regenerate skin cells that make you look good, so if either of those things make you happy then there you go.
Naps Might Even Help You Sleep Better at Night
This sounds strange since they might disrupt the sleep of some people, but think about this. When you nap and give your brain a moment to process information and de-stress, you can wake up refreshed and better to sort through your thoughts and handle what you need to get done. Anything that makes you more productive and more creative during the day can reduce your overall stress and mind chatter that is a common culprit for keeping you up at night. Interesting thought.