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A Nap a Day Keeps the Doc Away?

Usually, when you think of doing something good for your health, you think of working out on the treadmill, quitting smoking or reducing fats in your diet. One of the latest studies done and highly publicized in the newspapers shows that taking a midday nap is beneficial to your health.

In this study, the participants that took a nap in the middle of the day decreased their risk of dying from heart disease by more than 30 percent. Of all the studies done so far on this subject, this was the best, most comprehensive one to date.

The University of Athens conducted a study in which over 23,000 Greek men age 20 to 86 participated. They answered questions about health lifestyles and midday napping habits. The results found that the people who took a nap midday for 30 minutes or more 3 times a week had a 37 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease. In countries where a siesta is accepted and common, heart disease rates are lower than elsewhere.

One of the reasons cited that may contribute to the coronary benefits of napping was that a nap allows a break in the stresses of daily living. Another factor to the health benefits is our natural circadian rhythm that directs our sleeping and waking cycles dips in the early afternoon.

How do all these findings translate into Americans taking care of their health? Realize that it’s okay to grab a blanket and pillow and take an afternoon break and snooze. Finally something that’s good for your health that is so easy to comply with.

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