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Study: Daytime Naps May Help Lower Blood Pressure

(WBZ/CBS Local)-- Today is "National Napping Day" which is observed every year on the day following the return of daylight saving time. A new study finds a midday snooze can lower your blood pressure, perhaps as much as other lifestyle changes.

Researchers in Greece looked at more than 200 people with relatively well-controlled blood pressure who slept for on average about 50 minutes during the day. They found that a midday nap was associated with a drop in systolic blood pressure by about 5 mmHg. They say that's about what you would expect from reducing salt or alcohol intake and even low-dose blood pressure medication.

Researchers warn more research is needed. This one study does not mean that people should choose a nap over exercise, diet, and medication, but if you want to reduce your blood pressure, taking a little afternoon siesta may be just what the doctor ordered.

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