Study Shows Taking Afternoon Naps May Keep You Mentally Agile
The siesta, or a midday nap, is a "tradition" we picked up during our time under Spain. Through time, the practice has had negative connotations AKA laziness and unproductiveness. But, it actually may be more beneficial than we thought.
Aside from energizing, it's widely known that naps have cardiovascular benefits. A new study has found another reason why it's good for us, though: a short nap during the afternoon has links to better mental agility. What does that mean exactly? "Improved locational awareness, verbal fluency, and working memory," the study says.
"Several studies have shown that afternoon napping promotes cognitive function in the elderly; on the other hand, some studies have shown opposite results. This study highlighted higher cognitive performance in nappers in the elderly, supporting previous observational studies," the researchers said.
Over 2,000 participants over the age of 60 took part in the study. Researchers found that those that napped more frequently had higher cognitive performance scores in the survey. Sadly, yes, that means the benefits have only been studied in the elderly.
"When a disease or cell damage occurs, napping may help regulate the inflammatory response," the study added.