Afternoon Nap Helps You Live Longer

On October 13, 2015 by Physical Culturist

By: Ergolog

Looking for a habit that will help you reach a ripe old age with little effort? Make sure you get a short siesta every afternoon. According to researchers at the University of Athens, an afternoon nap is the secret to the fabulously high age reached by the oldest inhabitants of the island of Ikaria.

Study

Epidemiologists refer to them as Blue Zones: places on earth where people strikingly often live to be strikingly old. The Blue Zones include Sardinia in Italy, Okinawa in Japan, Loma Linda in the US, the Nicoya peninsula in Costa Rica – and the Greek island of Ikaria.

The researchers looked at the lifestyle of 1420 Ikarians. Of these, 187 were older than 80. The researchers used questionnaires to find out about the lifestyle of the 80+ group. The researchers assumed that this lifestyle would therefore be one that would help people to live to a ripe age.

Results

The results confirm to a large extent what we already knew. Many of the Ikarian octogenarians used to smoke, but had given up. The majority were still moderately physically active, and there were even a few who still did heavy physical work. What’s more, the octogenarians had a healthy diet. They ate noticeably high quantities of olive oil, fruit, vegetables, beans and fish, ate few sweet things and only ate red meat a couple of times a week.

The over-eighties were still socially active. Only a small minority no longer managed to get out and about.

The most striking discovery we have shaded above. Nearly all of the men over eighty and two-thirds of the women had a daily nap. Of the respondents over 90, 100 percent had a short nap each afternoon.

Anti-depressant effects

The octogenarians were contented: they had noticeably low scores on the depression questionnaires. The researchers think this may be linked to the siesta. The nappers had lower scores for depression than the non-nappers.

Cardiovascular effects

Health scientists recorded the beneficial health effects of the afternoon nap already in 2007. In that year other Greek epidemiologists published a study for which they had followed 24,000 people for a period of 6 years. That research showed that an afternoon nap protected men against heart attacks. The researchers in the current study suspect that a siesta reduces stress and cortisol levels.

source:
Cardiol Res Pract. 2011 Feb 24;2011:679187.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Random Posts

    • 10 Tips For Better Sleep

      (SignatureMD) A good night’s sleep is critical to anyone’s health. As the...

    • Aspartame

      Aspartame is linked to Leukemia and Lymphoma. See the infographic for more...

    • Is Cardio Making You Skinny Fat?

      There is a false belief that exercise should focus on burning calories, which is followed by the reinforcement from conventional wisdom that endurance training is the best way to stay healthy and fit. Meanwhile, the only thing cardio promotes is the ability to run for a really long time. Aside from creating a physique that’s far from ideal, this is an inferior biomarker for health and longevity.

  • Recent Posts

    • Why Ladies Should Lift Weights (by Neghar Fonooni)

      Written by: Neghar Fonooni, Fitocracy You won’t get big and bulky and...

    • 7 Benefits of Sleeping Naked

      Studies show only 10% of people sleep in the nude, and this is surprising especially with all the wonderful benefits that come along with sleeping in the buff. If the thoughts of sleeping in the nude are not very appealing to you, here are seven reasons that will have you convinced!

    • This is how physical exercise clears up tumours

      Every session of fairly intensive physical exercise works like a mini chemotherapy course, we wrote recently. Physical exertion transforms the body into a hostile environment for cancer cells. An animal study that Danish researchers published in 2016 in Cell Metabolism tells how.