18 Things a Cat Nap Can Fix

If you are feeling run down during the day a power nap may be just the thing to rev you up.

By Ellen Michaud with Julie Bain from Sleep to Be Sexy Smart and Slim

Yeah, we know. You didn’t sleep well last night. So why not take a nap?

Studies show that not only will you feel better almost immediately, says Sara Mednick, Ph.D., a sleep medicine researcher at the University of California at San Diego and author of Take a Nap! Change Your Life, but a daily nap of between 20 and 90 minutes before 4:00 P.M. will also increase your mental performance, reduce your chances of gaining weight, and make you feel a whole lot more like having sex after dinner than you probably do now. What’s more, it won’t affect your nighttime sleep.

All told, a nap, according to Dr. Mednick, will:

  • Increase your on-the-job alertness by 100 percent
  • Sharpen your thinking so you make more accurate judgments and better decisions
  • Ramp up your productivity
  • Regenerate skin cells so you look younger
  • Increase your sex drive
  • Help you lose weight by altering metabolism and shifting chemicals that affect appetite
  • Reduce your risk of heart attack, stroke, irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, and other cardiovascular problems
  • Lift your mood by bathing your brain in the neurotransmitter serotonin
  • Speed up your ability to perform motor tasks, like typing, operating machinery, even swimming
  • Improve your accuracy — in everything
  • Improve the way your body processes carbs, which reduces your risk of diabetes
  • Sharpen your senses so you take in what’s important in your environment — and screen out the 24-hour culture chatter that surrounds us
  • Put your brain into its creative gear so you can come up with fresh ideas
  • Trigger a naturally occurring hormone that blocks the destructive chemicals produced by stress
  • Boost your ability to learn something new — and, better yet, remember it
  • Zap the need for drugs like caffeine and alcohol to manipulate your mood and energy level
  • Relieve migrainesImprove your nighttime sleep by eliminating that wired feeling and thus shutting off the brain chatter
  • Make you feel good all over

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