At old age, people’s memory generally starts turning poor. But old persons who take a nap after lunch can preserve their memories, think clearly and also take decision well, according to a study.
The researchers say that sleep has an important role in helping maintain healthy mental function in older adults.
A study was conducted by Junxin Li from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia to learn whether taking an afternoon nap had any effect on their mental health. The team observed nearly 3,000 Chinese adults aged 65 and older to carry out the objective.
About 60 percent of the people took a nap after lunch, the researchers found. The nap time varied from 30 minutes to more than 90 minutes. And most of the people took naps lasting about 63 minutes.
According to the results, people who took an hour-long nap after lunch had better health condition than the people who did not take nap - neither shorter nor longer.
And those who took no naps at all had four to six times more decrease in their mental ability.
In addition, people who did not take a nap at all, and those who took shorter or longer naps, experienced about the same decline in their mental abilities that a five-year increase in age would be expected to cause, Li stated.
The study was published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.