19 Reasons to Take a Nap

Need an excuse to sneak in a nap this afternoon? We’ve got enough to last you weeks.

Woman taking a nap on the couchphoto credit: shutterstock

Yeah, we know. You didn’t sleep well last night. So why not take a nap?

Studies show that not only will you feel better almost immediately, says Sara Mednick, PhD, a sleep medicine researcher at the University of California at San Diego and author of Take a Nap! Change Your Life, but a daily nap of between 20 and 90 minutes before 4:00 pm will also increase your mental performance, reduce your chances of gaining weight, and make you feel a whole lot more like having sex after dinner than you probably do now. What’s more, it won’t affect your nighttime sleep.

It Sounds Quirky, But This Just Might Get You a Good Night’s Sleep

All told, a nap, according to Dr. Mednick, will:

  1. Increase your on-the-job alertness by 100 per cent
  2. Sharpen your thinking so you make more accurate judgments and better decisions
  3. Ramp up your productivity
  4. Regenerate skin cells so you look younger
  5. Increase your sex drive
  6. Help you lose weight by altering metabolism and shifting chemicals that affect appetite
  7. Reduce your risk of heart attack, stroke, irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, and other cardiovascular problems
  8. Lift your mood by bathing your brain in the neurotransmitter serotonin
  9. Speed up your ability to perform motor tasks, like typing, operating machinery, even swimming
  10. Improve your accuracy — in everything
  11. Improve the way your body processes carbs, which reduces your risk of diabetes
  12. Sharpen your senses so you take in what’s important in your environment — and screen out the 24-hour culture chatter that surrounds us
  13. Put your brain into its creative gear so you can come up with fresh ideas
  14. Trigger a naturally occurring hormone that blocks the destructive chemicals produced by stress
  15. Boost your ability to learn something new’and, better yet, remember it
  16. Zap the need for drugs like caffeine and alcohol to manipulate your mood and energy level
  17. Relieve migraines
  18. Improve your nighttime sleep by eliminating that wired feeling and thus shutting off the brain chatter
  19. Make you feel good all over

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The Healthy
Originally Published on The Healthy