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An all too familiar feeling? Sergey Mironov via Shutterstock

Firms wake up to profit potential from our declining sleep habits

Rest “is for wimps” – or so many would have us believe. In a world where “time is money” and there “aren’t enough hours in the day”, hard-working people are sleeping less and working more. This in itself…
Nordic nations enjoy regulated working hours, substantial welfare provision and strong economies. www.shutterstock.com

We can learn a lot about public policy from the Nordic nations

At the end of this month Australia’s Productivity Commission will issue the final report of its inquiry into Early Childhood Education and Care. The inquiry was limited from the outset by the requirement…
Most adults need seven to nine hours sleep to function at their best. Jiuck/Flickr

Explainer: how much sleep do we need?

The amount of sleep adults need has once again come under the spotlight, with a recent Wall Street Journal article suggesting seven hours sleep is better than eight hours and the American Academy of Sleep…
I hate sheep. Schmirn

Insomnia is not just in the mind

It’s often said that no-one really knows what sleep is for. Sometimes it’s as if this lack of surety means its functions are relatively unimportant or even vestigial, like an appendix to the story of our…
Just telling yourself you’re well rested doesn’t mean you can override how your body is experiencing lack of sleep. William Brawley/Flickr

Think positively about sleep by all means, but you can’t fool your body

Sleep – elusive, precious, restful sleep – is a topic close of many of our hearts. Such is the importance of this activity that sometimes people cling on to half-baked ideas about it with an unnatural…
It’s mid-afternoon but your body clock’s telling you it’s the middle of the night. Ed Yourdon

Explainer: what is jet lag and how can you overcome it?

Long flights across many time zones often leave us feeling fatigued, sleepy, irritable and generally out of sorts. And it’s not just because of poor sleep on the plane and dehydration from the altitude…
Adjusting back to standard time is easy for most of us and can happen in one or two days. jamelah e./Flickr

Spring forward, fall back: how daylight saving affects our sleep

Daylight saving time ends this weekend in most states and territories (barring Queensland, Western Australia and the Northern Territory), meaning we’ll turn our clocks back by one hour on Sunday morning…
The question of why animals risk the vulnerability that comes with not being conscious for hours has led to many theories. billfromesm/Flickr

Feeling sleepy? Maybe your brain’s too full

Sleep is an essential state of the brain but why do animals risk the vulnerability that comes with not being conscious for hours? What happens in the brain during sleep that’s so vital for life? Numerous…
Being tired is linked to eating unhealthy foods that may cause weight gain. Shuttershock

Does a bad night’s sleep make you likely to overeat?

Few people would argue with the idea that sleep is good for us, but not many of us know that a lack of sleep can cause weight gain. The health benefits of sleep are extremely well-documented. It provides…

Snoozing improves waking memory

Sleep helps lock in visual learning, according to new research from Brown University. The study observed the brain activity…
Body clocks readily reset themselves to natural sleep patterns if given the opportunity, the study found. Lazurite

How a week of camping resets the body clock

One week of camping outdoors and eschewing all man-made light is enough to reset a person’s body clock to its natural sleep…
Dark side of the moon: does it hold some power over us? PA/Anthony Devlin

We shouldn’t dismiss the moon’s power to influence

As a teenager I observed a strange phenomenon. On awakening from an unusually vivid dream, I would often find that the moon was full. And as the silvery light prevailed on subsequent nights, my nocturnal…

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