Proof That Naps Are Good for Your Health
Yay, science! A new study out of Switzerland confirms that a short daytime nap once or twice a week can lower your risk of heart attack or stroke.
"Sleep is good for the brain and for the body," declares Dr. Brian Murray, a neurologist at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto, tells the Canadian Broadcast Company (CBC).
"Sleep helps improve cognitive function, helps clear junk out of the brain and has benefits systemically in terms of your immune system, endocrine system and your general health," Murray explains.
However, there's a catch: Don't sleep too long or you'll wake up dead. Well, not really, but another study, published in the journal Neurology said that people napping more than 90 minutes were actually at a greater risk for a stroke – as much as 25 percent higher, in fact.
Dr. Atul Khullar, medical director of the Northern Alberta Sleep Clinic, tells the CBC, "Excessive naps of 90 minutes or a couple of hours, almost is a biological emergency. The body is not supposed to be doing that."
The sweet spot for a siesta seems to be around 20 minutes, say scientists.