The Strange Thing That Happens To Your Blood Pressure When You Sleep Naked

Sleeping in the nude comes with a lot of benefits. Apart from the more obvious and steamy good things like an increased likelihood of night-time intimacy with your significant other, naked snoozing is associated with the prevention of overheating, brown fat generation and resulting benefits to your metabolism, and even just overall better sleep. When you're warm and sweaty, it's difficult to get comfortable in bed. The opposite is true when your body temperature is lower.

But as it turns out, having skin-to-skin contact with your partner could boost oxytocin levels and help lower your blood pressure. Older research related to hugging your partner and the resulting oxytocin release reached similar conclusions. Oxytocin, sometimes referred to as the "love hormone," gets released by your brain when you feel close to someone, like when you're hugging them, having sex with them, or even just falling in love with them. According to a 2020 study published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, oxytocin triggers the release of atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP), a cardiac hormone that's thought to have a systemic blood pressure-lowering effect. Interestingly, there are other surprising things that happen to your heart health when you start sleeping naked.

Heart health and sleeping stripped down: Explained

The other ways in which cozying up in bed without any clothes promotes heart health are more indirect, but that doesn't make them any less important. 

For starters, sleeping naked promotes the production of brown fat in our systems, the type of fat associated with boosting metabolic health. Primarily, we have two types of fat in our bodies: white fat and brown fat. While white fat has to do with storing excess energy (which can lead to excess storage and therefore obesity), brown fat is the kind of fat that burns calories while trying to maintain body temperature. Cold temperatures trigger the production of brown fat. See where we're going with this? More brown fat also means a reduced risk of diabetes and obesity, two conditions famously linked with heart disease. 

Additionally, since sleeping naked means more comfortable snoozing, your overall sleep quality could improve. Quality sleep — getting your recommended hours of sleep and having undisturbed sleep through the night — is associated with better blood pressure levels and heart health, too. Insomnia and poor sleep quality can increase the stress hormone cortisol in your system. It can also disrupt your hunger and satiation hormones, promoting overeating and resulting in fatigue that prevents you from exercising. All of these domino effects of a lack of sleep can wreak havoc on your heart health.

How to practice naked sleeping without getting uncomfortable

No, it's not just celebrities who sleep naked. If you were to ask friends and friends of friends, you're bound to find at least one person who's embraced this blood pressure-lowering habit. But we do get it; for first-time nude sleepers, the entire thing can feel quite bizarre. What if you want to get up and go to the bathroom at night? What happens if it gets too cold? What about bodily fluids? All valid concerns. 

Comfortable sheets and pillowcases are a must, and so is washing them quite often (like once a week). Discharge from your nether regions is completely natural at night, so keeping things fresh, bed linen-wise, can help you feel more comfortable. Showering before bed can help, too. It also goes without saying that you can start slow and work yourself up. Strip off one layer of clothing (like just your pajama bottoms) first and work yourself up to completely disrobing before bed. The important thing is that you're comfortable. 

Having a warm blanket to cover yourself with in case it gets too cold also matters. Ultimately, sleeping in the nude is a very personal choice. The habit might grow on someone with time, while others take to it like ducks to water. Still, others might never like the prospect. If you want the benefits of lowering your blood pressure and don't want to sleep naked, you can try wearing minimal clothing and snuggling up close to your significant other. Oxytocin release doesn't necessitate full-on nakedness.