Regular napping is good for the brain, study finds Tech News

A nap during the day can leave you refreshed, energized and ready to take on the world. Now, new research suggests it might be good for your brain, too.

A study analyzing data from people ages 40 to 69 showed that daytime naps can slow the rate of brain shrinkage as we age.

The researchers found that the average difference in brain volume between habitual nappers and nonnappers was equivalent to 2.6 to 6.5 years of aging.

They say they hope their findings about the health benefits of daytime sleeping will reduce any stigma that daytime napping still has.

Senior author Dr Victoria Garfield, from UCL’s Lifelong Health and Aging MRC Unit, said: “Our findings suggest that, for some people, short daytime naps may be part of the puzzle that helps keep the brain healthy. Because we’re getting old.”

Previous research has shown that people who take a short nap perform better on cognitive tests over the following hours than those who don’t take 40 naps.

The new study, published in the journal Sleep Health, looked at whether there was a cause-and-effect relationship between daytime naps and brain health.

The researchers looked at 97 DNA fragments that are thought to determine how likely people are to habitually nap.

They compared measures of brain health and cognition using data from a UK Biobank study of 378,932 people who were genetically more prone to napping and who did not have these changes in their DNA.

They found that, overall, people who scheduled naps had greater total brain volume.

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Genetic variants – changes in DNA – that affect how likely someone is to nap were identified in earlier research that looked at data from 452,633 UK Biobank participants.

But the researchers found no difference in how those programmed to habitually nap performed on the other three measures of brain health and cognitive function.

Lead author and PhD candidate Valentina Paz, from the Universidad de la Repubblica (Uruguay) and UCL’s Lifelong Health and Aging MRC Unit, said: “This is the first study to try to disentangle the causal relationship between daytime habitual napping and cognition and cognition. Research.Structural Brain Outcomes.

“By looking at genes programmed at birth, Mendelian randomization avoids confounding factors that arise throughout life that might affect the association between napping and health outcomes.

“Our study points to a causal relationship between habitual napping and greater total brain volume.”

Dr Garfield added: “I hope studies like this one showing the health benefits of napping will help reduce any stigma that still exists with daytime napping.”

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