Taking regular naps has been found to be beneficial for our brains and can help keep them healthy for longer, according to researchers from University College London. The study revealed that people who took naps had brains that were 15 cubic centimeters larger than those who didn’t nap, which is equivalent to delaying the aging process by three to six years.
However, the scientists recommend keeping naps to less than half an hour. Unfortunately, daytime sleep can be challenging for many people due to work culture and the disapproval of napping in many careers.
Dr. Victoria Garfield, one of the researchers, emphasized that everyone could potentially benefit from napping and described the findings as exciting and novel. She also highlighted that napping was a simple activity compared to weight loss or exercise, which can be difficult for many individuals.
Napping is more common in babies for their development, becomes less frequent as we grow older, and regains popularity after retirement, with around 27 percent of people over 65 reporting daytime naps.
While napping has shown positive effects on brain health, further research is needed to determine if it can help prevent diseases like Alzheimer’s. Maintaining overall brain health is crucial for protecting against dementia, and there is a link between disturbed sleep and the condition.
The researchers suggest that poor sleep damages the brain over time by causing inflammation and affecting the connections between brain cells. They propose that regular napping could compensate for deficient sleep and potentially protect against neurodegeneration.
However, Dr. Garfield mentioned that she prefers other methods of brain care, such as exercising for 30 minutes, rather than napping. Each individual can find what works best for them.