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Occasional Napping Linked to Lower Risk for Cardiovascular Events

TUESDAY, Sept. 10, 2019 -- Napping once or twice per week is associated with a lower risk for incident cardiovascular disease (CVD) events, according to a study published online Sept. 9 in Heart.

Nadine Häusler, Ph.D., from the University Hospital of Lausanne in Switzerland, and colleagues examined the correlation of napping frequency and average nap duration with fatal and nonfatal CVD events among 3,462 individuals with no previous history of CVD.

The researchers found that 155 fatal and nonfatal events occurred during a follow-up of 5.3 years. Compared with non-napping individuals, those who napped one to two times weekly had a significantly lower risk for developing a CVD event (hazard ratio, 0.52; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.28 to 0.95) in unadjusted as well as adjusted analyses. In adjusted models, the increased hazard ratio (1.67; 95 percent CI, 1.10 to 2.55) for individuals napping six to seven times weekly was attenuated (hazard ratio, 0.89; 95 percent CI, 0.58 to 1.38). This lower risk was not modified by obstructive sleep apnea or excessive daytime sleepiness. Nap duration was not associated with CVD events.

"The study of napping is a challenging but also a promising field with potentially significant public health implications," write the authors of an accompanying editorial. "While there remain to be more questions than answers, it is time to start unveiling the power of naps for a supercharged heart."

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Posted: September 2019

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