Certain new research suggests that a nap of roughly one hour, when taken around noon, can decrease blood pressure and help to prevent a heart attack.
The study that introduces this information looked at 400 people in their 50’s and 60’s that had high blood pressure. Those who napped had a roughly five-percent decrease in their blood pressure. Also, their blood pressure at night fell as much as six-percent.
Small Percentage Drop in BP Equals Big Drop in Heart Attack Risk
While the less than 10-percent changes in blood pressure are a small change, the difference to the individual’s risk for a heart attack or stroke is significantly higher, greater than 10 to 15-percent for any type of cardiac event.
The study was completed by cardiologists at the Asklepielon Voula General Hospital in Athens. The research was presented to the European Society of Cardiology recently during a meeting in London.
Napping Changes Physical Attributes of Heart
The study that involved a little more than half male subjects (200) and 186 females, showed that the left atrium of the heart decreased in size in those individuals who enjoyed afternoon naps.
Meanwhile, the effects of a nap could be found comparable in people who ate healthy and exercise and those who fell victim to vices that ranged from smoking to salt, caffeine and even alcohol consumption.
The changes can be found as a correlation between risk reduction and the choice to take regular naps. It can not be a direct causation that taking a nap will prevent you from ever having heart disease.
Likewise, people who took naps can find confidence that the longer they nap, the better in terms of heart health. It also allows the medications you are prescribed to decrease in number.
People who are older tend to see napping as a sign they are aging and a detraction from their desire to live a full and healthy life. On the contrary, a daily nap can help you maintain a healthy heart and veins and also can ensure you have enough energy to keep up with younger counterparts in various activities in the evening.
A decrease in high blood pressure and a reduced risk of cardiovascular event is not something to dismiss offhand. Instead, choose to keep your heart healthy with any means at your disposal and make a conscious effort to take an hour-long afternoon nap to keep the atrium of your heart from becoming too large and causing health issues.
The study information for this particular study has as yet not been published in a peer-reviewed journal. Therefore, the study is considered preliminary evidence and not something to base further review upon as of yet.
People with increased risk for heart attack or stroke and who already have high blood pressure should consider adding an afternoon nap to their regular schedule of events just in the chance it can help them greatly. It can not hurt to get a bit more sleep.