Image: Cover Media
You know all those hours you’ve spent checking out funny cat videos on YouTube? Or clicking on links your work friends have shared when there’s an afternoon lull? Well it turns out that far from wasting time, watching animal footage could actually have some health benefits.
Some people use coffee or an equivalent when they hit a wall at around 3pm, but the caffeine can have a big impact on their sleeping habits. So a group of scientists have looked at ways to drive off the doziness without getting you wired, and apparently cat videos are the answer.
A video of all their tips is being promoted by the American Chemical Society, with turning on lights, staying hydrated and dancing also suggested.
Footage of pets doing silly things helps boost levels of oxytocin, a feel-good hormone, in your brain. Simultaneously the amount of stress hormone cortisol is decreased, which means you’ll feel better and find it easier to concentrate on your work.
Perhaps not as fun, but very sciencey, is the suggestion to glug down as much H2O as you can.
“Dehydration can lead to fatigue, not to mention more serious symptoms like confusion, heart palpitations and fainting,” the group explain.
“The adult human body is 50 to 65 per cent water. We typically start to get thirsty when we have lost two to three per cent of our body's water.
“Believe it or not, it can affect you mentally and physically when you have lost just one per cent.”
Throwing some shapes to your favourite tunes will also help shake off sleepiness, because dancing produces endorphins, which improve mood. Although it is perhaps less easy to hide a hip-hop routine from your boss than it is a 20-second video of a cat playing the piano.
Walking outside and turning on lights will also work, because light signals to the brain that it is time to be awake and alert.
“Getting out and taking a quick walk in the sun might just be all you need to get the rest of the day running smoothly,” the team added. --Cover Media
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