30 minute power nap can help sleep deprived individuals

A 30-minute power nap can overcome the adverse effects of lack of sleep, says a new research. Small power nap can help relieve stress and can play an essential in proper functioning of the immune system weakened by poor sleep (nearly 2 hours) last night.

“Our data suggests a 30-minute nap can reverse the hormonal impact of a night of poor sleep,” said one of the study’s authors, Brice Faraut, of the Universite Paris Descartes-Sorbonne Paris Cite in Paris, France. “This is the first study that found napping could restore biomarkers of neuroendocrine and immune health to normal levels,” said Faraut.

For the study researchers involved 11 healthy men aged between 25-32 years. Researchers forced the participant to sleep for two hours a night and observed levels of their hormones, urine and saliva. On the very next day, they noticed 2.5 times increase in norepinephrine, a stress hormone responsible for increased heart rate, blood pressure and blood sugar.

Restriction of two-hour sleep was applied on the next day too, but this time participants were allowed to take two 30 minutes power nap in the day. This time researchers found negligible change in level norepinephrine. Small rest in daytime bolstered effects of lack of sleep.

“Napping may offer a way to counter the damaging effects of sleep restriction by helping the immune and neuroendocrine systems to recover,” Faraut said. “The findings support the development of practical strategies for addressing chronically sleep-deprived populations, such as night and shift workers.”

This is the first study that states possible solutions to overcome the effect lack of sleep. Lack of sleep triggers many problems including obesity, diabetes, depression, weak immune system, high blood pressure, etc. In addition, it results in reduced work productivity; especially the night shift workers suffer the most with poor sleep problem. The study suggests a new way to those victims of poor sleep.

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