This Father’s Day, Give Dad a Gift He Can Really Use: A Nap

Manisha Parulekar, M.D.
Hackensack University Medical Center

Please, no more ties or gold-toe socks. And save the power tools for Christmas. 

This Father’s Day, give Dad a gift he can really use: A nap.

Napping has often been written off as a guilty pleasure, but a new study suggests that an afternoon nap may be a brain booster for those 65 and older. 

The study of nearly 3,000 adults aged 65 and older found that those who had taken an hour nap after lunch showed improved memory, clearer thinking and increased cognitive performance than those who did not nap or took a shorter or longer nap.

The people who napped for an hour after lunch performed better on the brain function tests than those who didn't nap at all, and those who slept for an hour also outperformed the people who slept for less than an hour or more than an hour, the findings showed. 

Study participants who either didn't nap, or took short naps or very long naps had declines in their mental abilities that were up to six times greater than those who slept for an hour in the afternoon.

“This study shows that a nap after lunch may be part of a healthy lifestyle for older adults, whereas naps at other times of the day might affect night time sleep,” says Manisha Parulekar, M.D., of Hackensack University Medical Center.

So for adults, it all comes down to the question of, to nap or not to nap? Still unsure which is the right choice for you? Read more here!