Love daytime snoozing? You should check on the duration as napping too long during the day may awaken some health issues. Researchers say people who sleep for long hours during the day are at higher risk of developing irregular heartbeats.

More than 30 minutes of sleep during the daytime can lead to a heart rhythm condition called atrial fibrillation (a-fib), shows a new study, which is yet to be published in a peer-reviewed journal.

"Our study indicates that snoozes during the day should be limited to less than 30 minutes," study author Jesus Diaz-Gutierrez, of Juan Ramon Jimenez University Hospital in Huelva, Spain, said in a news release from the European Society of Cardiology.

Atrial fibrillation is a cardiac disorder that causes irregular and sometimes very rapid heart rhythm. This can lead to blood clots in the heart, thereby increasing the risk of stroke and other cardiac ailments, according to Mayo Clinic. The condition predominantly occurs in the heart's upper chamber, Health Day reported.

Over 20,000 Spanish university graduates participated in the study. They were grouped under three categories: the ones who don't nap, those who nap less than 30 minutes and those who nap 30 minutes or more each day. During the follow-up period of 14 years, 131 participants developed a-fib.

Researchers found those who took longer naps were twice at the risk of developing the disorder compared to those who slept less during the day. Those who didn't nap at all were in the no-risk zone.

The study indicated that people who napped for fewer than 15 minutes had a 42% lesser chance of developing a-fib, and those whose sleep routine was limited between 15 to 30 minutes had a 56% reduced risk of a-fib as compared to long nappers.

"The results suggest that the optimal napping duration is 15 to 30 minutes," Diaz-Gutierrez said. "Larger studies are needed to determine whether a short nap is preferable to not napping at all."

"Long daytime naps may disrupt the body's internal clock (circadian rhythm), leading to shorter night-time sleep, more nocturnal awakening, and reduced physical activity," the researcher explained said. "In contrast, short daytime napping may improve circadian rhythm, lower blood pressure levels, and reduce stress."

The study has just established a link between long naps and a-fib, it doesn't explain its cause and effects.

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