Don't feel guilty if you drift off on the sofa this afternoon after a hearty family roast, as naps are proven to be beneficial for your health.
According to new research, a regular one-hour nap can lower blood pressure by almost the same amount as taking medication with the same goal or cutting down on salt and alcohol intake.
The study - conducted by doctors at the Asklepieion General Hospital in Greece - involved 212 participants with high blood pressure. The patients wore blood pressure monitors to track their readings over the course of the day.
Results showed that those who napped for one hour per day experienced an average drop of 3mm Hg in blood pressure compared to those who did not.
'Midday sleep appears to lower blood pressure levels at the same magnitude as other lifestyle changes' the study’s co-author, Dr Manolis Kallistratos, said. 'For example, salt and alcohol reduction can bring blood pressure levels down by 3 to 5 mm Hg.'
'Based on our findings, if someone has the luxury to take a nap during the day, it may also have benefits for high blood pressure,' Dr Kallistratos added.
Well, that's our afternoon plans sorted then.
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