High blood pressure (BP) also known as hypertension, is the most common cardiovascular disorder. Blood pressure is the force of the blood pushing against your artery walls as it flows through your body.
As water in a pipe or air in a tyre fills them, blood fills your arteries to a point. As too much air pressure can damage a tire, or too much water pushing through a garden hose can damage the hose,similarly high blood pressure can hurt our arteries and lead to life-threatening conditions.
So we should not take it forgranted. We must pay heed to take care of our health. Lifestyle plays an important role in the control of your high blood pressure.
If we successfully control our blood pressure with a healthy lifestyle, we might avoid, delay or reduce the need for medication.In this column, we will look at a latest research that shows a promising new lifestyle modification to reduce high blood pressure.
Now we will discuss amazing beneficial effects of “Napping” on high blood pressure.
We all know that good living habits such as regular walk,exercise lower salt in diet have significance in blood pressure control. Now a new habit which decreases high blood pressure significantly is “Mid-day Napping”.
A latest research shows that taking a short 20-40 min nap during the day helps in significantly reducing blood pressure in high BP patients.
“Mid-day sleep appears to lower blood pressure levels at the same magnitude as other lifestyle changes do”
Dr. MANOLIS KALLISTRATOS
The study assessed the effect of naps on blood pressure levels in 212 those with typically higher blood pressure who had an average age of 62 years having an average of 130mmhg of Systolic BP. 25% of these people also had diabetes , smoking as a risk factor.The people were divided into two groups-the one taking nap on regular basis while the other live without taking a nap.
This was maintained for a couple of months. The study found that mid-day sleepers had a five per cent lower average daily BP measurement compared to those who did not take a nap. Also studying the pulse and heart, the research found those who nap had less damage from high blood pressure in both their arteries and heart.
The Researchers said throughout the study they accounted for other factors which could affect blood pressure, including age, gender, BMI, smoking, alcohol, exercise and coffee. The study also found a link between how long the naps were and hypertension; with those who slept for an hour producing the healthiest blood pressure results.
Dr.MANOLI said: “Mid-day sleep is a habit that nowadays is almost a privilege due to a nine to five working culture and intense daily routine.”A drug can cause a 5-7mmhg average reduction in BP whereas a 40min nap if taken regularly can reduce overall an average of 5mmhg in BP.
“We obviously don’t want to encourage people to sleep for hours on end during the day but on the other hand , they shouldn’t feel guilty if they can take a short nap,given the potential health benefits.”