Most people associate nappers with lazy people. You sleep all night and still need a nap in the middle of the day. You must have went to bed too late or are just plain lazy. Studies have actually shown lately that there is a little more to napping than meets the eye. There are numerous benefits.
- Naps improve alertness and stamina.
- Naps can lift productivity and mood.
- They can lower stress.
- They can improve memory and learning.
- Brain activity stays high throughout the day after naps.
The optimum nap time is about 20 minutes but no more. When you sleep for 20 minutes you go through the first 2 cycles of sleep where you really relax and fall in to a slight sleep. Any more than that and you start to fall in to the third cycle of sleep which is a deeper, slow wave sleep. If you start to slip in to this stage of sleep, you may wake up groggy and tired. This is the opposite effect of what you want. So set an alarm clock to get the optimum level of sleep.
When taking a nap, follow these steps:
- Avoid drinking caffeine, sugar, or fatty foods before naps.
- Eat foods with calcium or protein which promote sleep.
- Find a dark place to sleep or use an eye shade.
- Find a quiet place to sleep where you won’t be disturbed.
- Sleep with a blanket to raise body temperature.
- White noise works for some people to help them relax.
- Set an alarm to make sure you don’t fall in to too deep of a sleep.
Power naps are very beneficial. Take advantage of them to improve your life. For more information on the subject and the source of this material, check out this article at Men’s Journal.