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Using laptops and tablets in the evening may disrupt sleep by suppressing melatonin secretion

I am a big fan of natural sunlight, and evidence links it with a range of potential benefits for the body. Light also has the capacity to effect the brain. The role for light here becomes immediately apparent in the winter, when light can be in short supply and some people find their mood and […]

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Want to lose weight? Maybe turn off the TV and go to bed

Six years ago I decided to dramatically reduce the amount of time I spent watching TV, and this single intervention (I believe) had a dramatic effect on my life. It liberated a significant amount of time that I could devote to perhaps more useful and rewarding pursuits. You may be thinking that I’m referring to […]

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Getting more sleep could make it easier to control our weight

One could argue that our health is the product of factors that can be genetic (inherited) or environmental (including diet and activity). Body weight, for instance, will usually ultimately determined by these two major factors. There is no doubt that some people inherit more of a tendency to be heavier than others. Some people do […]

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A brief guide to better sleep

Yesterday, I wrote a post about how a lack of sleep might contribute to unhealthy weight gain. Today, I’m following this up on a guide to how to get better sleep. In no particular order, here are some of the strategies which I’ve found consistent success with in terms of improving sleep quality, and most […]

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Review highlights several mechanisms through which lack of sleep can cause us to put on weight

The last few decades have seen a rise in rates of overweight and obesity. Average duration of sleep has declined in the Western world too. Could the two be connected? Actually, yes. There are a number of mechanisms through which reduced sleep time might be somehow contributing to the obesity ‘epidemic’, and these were summarised […]

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More evidence comes in that lack of sleep might drive over-eating

Earlier this month I wrote about a study in which the effect of sleep deprivation on appetite ratings in response to images of food was tested [1]. Overall, subjective feelings of hunger were significantly greater after the night of sleep deprivation. The study subjects underwent brain scanning too (functional magnetic resonance imaging). After a night […]

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Why might shift-workers be at increased risk of multiple sclerosis?

When I was a junior doctor, like a lot of junior doctors, I was not thrilled when my bleep would go off in the middle of the night to be called to attend to a sick person. It was not uncommon for this to happen after a full and busy day at work. Sometimes, little […]

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Podcast – 14th October 2011

Difficulty getting up in the morning may be SAD, restless legs linked with high blood pressure, it seems our ancient ancestors ate a low-carb diet. For RSS feeds, click on and then the ‘RSS feeds’ button to the right. For help regarding the playing, downloading and subscribing of the podcasts, click here.

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Difficulty getting up in the morning in the winter? It might be SAD

Here in the UK the days are noticeably shorter, and this time of year will herald for some the advent of low mood or sometimes full-blown depression known as ‘seasonal affective disorder’ (SAD). Anecdotally, I’ve noticed that many people dislike the winter because they can struggle to get up in the mornings. A lot of […]

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Coffee safe for those with history of raised blood pressure

I’m a coffee drinker, and believe this beverage has done little to deserve its quite unhealthy reputation. Much of the negativity concerning coffee comes from the fact that it’s generally rich in caffeine. One effect of caffeine is to raise blood pressure – and raised blood pressure has links with heart disease and stroke. Perhaps, […]

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