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Bob Carroll
Bob Carroll
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Napping Your Way To Good Health

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Pardon me while I doze off for awhile.

Regular Midday Snoozes Tied to a Healthier Heart

Taking a nap after lunch may be good for your heart. This splendid news arrived in the form of a study published Monday in The Archives of Internal Medicine.

In a study of more than 23,000 Greek men and women ages 20 to 86, researchers found that napping at least three times a week for a half-hour was associated with a significantly decreased risk of death from heart disease. After controlling for factors like smoking, body mass index, physical activity and diet, the researchers found that people who regularly took a siesta had a 37 percent lower coronary death rate than those who never napped. The effect was even greater in working men.

Dr. Dimitrios Trichopoulos, the senior author of the study and a professor of cancer prevention at the Harvard School of Public Health, acknowledged that the study included only a small number of people who had died of coronary artery disease, and that the results when women were analyzed separately, while suggestive of some effect, were not conclusive.

Still, he said, for him a siesta is an absolute requirement.

The idea that naps might be associated with decreased mortality from heart disease, the authors write, was suggested by the high prevalence of siestas in Mediterranean and certain Central American countries where there are low rates of heart disease. But previous studies have shown that in these countries the healthy diet, high in fiber and monounsaturated fat and low in meat and dairy products, is also a predictor of reduced mortality from heart disease. To control for this, the researchers assigned all the participants a score based on how closely they followed that healthy diet.

From the New York Times

I know this has nothing whatsoever to do with injuries. But, don’t you feel better already knowing a daytime snooze is just what the doctor ordered?