Thursday, March 24, 2016

Don't Sleep On It

According to a study presented at the American College of Cardiology, taking long naps or being excessively tired throughout the day is associated with a higher risk for developing metabolic syndrome. Their study recorded that taking 40 min or longer naps significantly increased the risk of developing metabolic syndrome. Subjects who napped less than 40 minutes did not show increased risk for metabolic syndrome, but those who napped 40 minutes had a sharp increase in risk. Napping for 90 minutes increased metabolic syndrome risk by as much as 50%.

Clarifying the difference and relationship between being tired and metabolic syndrome may offer a new strategy of treatment options.

Interestingly, this study as well as a couple of others recently performed show a slight decrease in risk for respective conditions when subjects napped for less than 30 minutes. The National Sleep Foundation actually advocates naps of 20-30 minutes to improve alertness.

Thus, we better reconsider how long we take our naps. How often do you nap?

 American College of Cardiology. "Long naps, daytime sleepiness tied to greater risk of metabolic syndrome: Findings suggest more research is needed to understand the role of sleep and heart risk factors." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 March 2016.

Dasha Agoulnik (1)


  1. Naps are important to the body as they refresh the brain and the body. I rarely nap, and if I do my nap ranges from 10 to 30 minutes. It is interesting how your body needs a nap, but if the nap is long this will affect your body negatively.

    Mohammed Saleh

  2. I find it hard to take naps. Not sure if it's just excess energy, but i attempt to avoid naps, and usually if i do accidently fall asleep and wake up shortly after, i don't feel like even getting up and continuing the rest of the day. It's interesting to see that napping for a while is actually bad for you.

    - Chris Richard

  3. I feel like there are so many different statistics and recommendations regarding napping. I've heard that some naps should be timed to match a full REM cycle, while others should be 20 minutes in order to be refreshing. However, from personal experience I feel like the effect of the nap is also affected by numerous other variables such as food or how much previous sleep you had. It definitely comes down to individual's preference and specific body needs.
    Erina Taradai

  4. This is not good news for me, someone who sleeps far more than they should. One thing about studies like this is that many variables may be playing a role in the results seen. It is important to take other things into account, like eating habits and smoking/drinking, when conducting studies like these. Are the participants' napping habits the principle cause of the increased risk for metabolic syndrome, or are there other factors also involved?

    -Bradley Sarasin (Group 3)

  5. I find that I always have to nap almost daily so I'm not falling asleep later when I go to do homework after class. I wonder how doctors tell the difference between just being tired and having metabolic syndrome and if certain life style choices, say smoking or drinking alcohol or a certain amount of caffeine can put you more at risk for this syndrome. Interesting stuff!
    -Kelsey Morrison

  6. Working for a long time can be stressful on the body, and naps have been proven to be a great way to improve productivity. Some people are actually able to get a full 8 hours of sleep by breaking it up into short naps throughout the day in order to maximize their workday productivity.

    -Josef Mazzuchi

  7. I feel as if your blog needed more information of what metabolic syndrome is and what taking a nap does to directly affect it. Overall an interesting topic and I would be interested to see if the other daily habits of the people with metabolic syndrome were.

    -Emily Mueller (Group 2)

  8. For me it is very difficult to nap during the day which I guess is a good thing considering that napping is bad for you. I always thought it was good to nap cause if you are tired during the day you should lay down and sleep for a little to feel refreshed for the rest of the day. I guess people should just try and get a better nights sleep so that they can avoid napping and being excessively tired.

    Rebecca Thomas

  9. This topic proved my point, taking a 30 min nap is better than taking 40+ minutes. I had a disagreement with a friend that said taking a long nap is good for you. Thanks for posting this!

    David Mota (2)

  10. Surprisingly enough, it surprises me that not that many people take naps. I realized that I began to nap more this year when compared to my other two years at the university. Since this semester has began, I have taken a nap every single day and that has to do with the fact that I have late nights and early mornings, which took and still does take a huge toll on my body. I am guilty of taking long naps, but thats only because my body craves it, however, i have realized that despite me getting ample amount of sleep, i still have the tendency to take a nap when i do get on my bed during the day.

    -SOffie Jobarteh