JEDDAH, SAUDI ARABIA, September 11, 2019 – Some good news for nap fanatics – a new study has found that a daytime nap taken once or twice a week could lower the risk of heart attacks or strokes.
Researchers from the University Hospital of Lausane, Switzerland studies the association between napping frequency and duration and the risk of fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular disease complications.
Tracking 3,462 people between the ages of 35 and 75 for just over the five years, the report authors found that those who indulged in occasional napping – once or twice a week, for between five minutes to an hour – were 48% less likely to suffer a heart attack, stroke or heart failure than those who did not nap at all.
The observational study, which was published in Heart, the journal of the British Cardiovascular Society, found that no such association emerged for greater frequency or duration of naps.
While some studies have been done on the impact of napping frequency or duration, the researchers said.
“Subjects who nap once or twice per week have a lower risk of incident CVD (cardiovascular disease) events, while no association was found for more frequent napping or napping duration”, the report authors said.
“Sleep patterns have previously been reported to be associated with a range of chronic medical conditions”, said Stephen MacMahon, a cardiovascular expert at Oxford University’s George Institute for Global Heart, who was not involved in the study.
“Some, but not all, these association will reflect the effects of underlying chronic disease on sleep rather than the converse. It’s often difficult to untangle what is cause and effect, especially when some serious conditions, such as coronary heart disease, can be largely symptom – free for decades prior to a critical complications such as heart attack”, he told the Science Media Center (SMC) in London.
Naveed Sattar, Professor of Metabolic Medicine at the University of Glasgow, said that while the study was “somewhat interesting”, it seems that those who nap once or twice a week have healthier or organized lifestyle, but that those who napped daily where likely to be more sick.