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August 1, 2013 | By Deborah Netburn
Do you stay up late and wake up groggy? Then consider getting a tent and a sleeping bag. A week of camping may help reset your body's internal clock, a new study suggests. Researchers from the University of Colorado-Boulder recently took eight people on a weeklong camping trip in the Rocky Mountains to see what would happen to their sleep cycle if they were exposed to nothing but natural light for seven days. Campers were told to leave flashlights, cellphones and other light emitting electronics at home. Nighttime campfires were permitted.
February 19, 1998
The month of your birth may determine how tall you are, according to Austrian researchers. A survey they conducted on more than 507,000 Austrian soldiers showed that men born in the spring tend to be taller than those born in the autumn, but they had no explanation yet why that was the case. The researchers compared the heights of the soldiers measured by the Austrian Federal Army throughout a full year, and reported in Nature that they varied periodically by about 0.
April 26, 1999 | ROSIE MESTEL
Sleep is kind of a theme this week in Health--check out Media Mix on this page for information on books simply stuffed with sleepy facts. Still, we bet that nowhere among all those many pages will you find this novel tip for a more restful night: Forget all that behavior modification and melatonin stuff. Just cover yourself with important-looking electrodes. The downside: You might have to rent a rocket ship to sleep in.
August 28, 2012 | By Carolyn Kellogg
There are many ways to slide into a good night's sleep -- here, we're concerned with just one of them: reading. And if you take to bed with a good book on your tablet, like the man above, you're doing it wrong. That's according to a new study -- a teeny, tiny study -- at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Lighting Research Center. RPI found that looking at a backlit screen, like those on iPads and other tablets, can lead to sleeplessness. “Our study shows that a two-hour exposure to light from self-luminous electronic displays can suppress melatonin by about 22 percent," said Mariana Figueiro, the lead researcher.  “Stimulating the human circadian system to this level may affect sleep in those using the devices prior to bedtime.” In the study, 13 subjects read, watched videos and played games on tablets with backlit displays for two hours.
August 16, 1998 | KATHLEEN DOHENY
Trips can be rough on the body, and travelers often complain about gastrointestinal problems, motion sickness and sleep disturbances. The search for relief may lead them to sleeping pills, caffeine, alcohol or over-the-counter medications that can make them feel worse. But herbal medicine experts suggest turning to the produce section or the health-food shelves to find surprisingly simple remedies for travel-related ailments.
August 26, 2008 | Chuck Culpepper, Special to The Times
NEW YORK -- The Jet Lag Open began Monday with the sluggishness you'd expect of a post-Beijing tennis major that ought to have an official Melatonin supplier. "I'm actually falling asleep right now," Jelena Jankovic said around 10 p.m. EDT, and the world's No. 2 player said that during her own news conference after beating 16-year-old San Diegan Coco Vandeweghe, 6-3, 6-1, a night match that kept Jankovic up well past her body's recent chosen bedtime of around 7 p.m. Barely had Jankovic presumably dozed off in a courtesy car when an Olympic achiever looked similarly woozy.
November 26, 1995 | KATHLEEN DOHENY
While others debate whether the hormone melatonin can help us sleep, reverse aging and thwart disease, travel medicine experts have progressed to another argument: What's the best dose to ward off jet lag? Study after study has shown that melatonin helps minimize jet lag, which afflicts nearly all long-distance fliers and tends to get worse with age. But experts still don't concur on exactly when travelers should take it . . . or how much.
Advertisements that promote the use of melatonin supplements for the elderly are misleading to consumers, according to a new study by Boston researchers. The ads, often seen on TV or in magazines, claim that levels of melatonin--a hormone that helps control the sleep cycle--naturally decline with aging and that the elderly need to replace it with supplements to get a good night's sleep. "Our data do not support this claim," said Dr. Charles A. Czeisler of the Harvard Medical School.
January 26, 2004 | Jane E. Allen
The hormone melatonin -- known to influence sleep -- also may lower blood pressure. In a study led by Dr. Frank A.J.L. Scheer, a neurologist at Harvard Medical School, 16 men with untreated hypertension were given 2.5 milligrams of melatonin before bedtime for three weeks. For another three weeks, they received a single dose of melatonin on the first night and placebos the other nights. Their blood pressure was monitored around the clock. In the Jan.
October 12, 2000
The biological clock of a totally blind person who is unable to see sunlight can go out of sync with the rest of the world, keeping the person awake when the rest of the world is sleeping. Oregon doctors report in today's New England Journal of Medicine that melatonin tablets--sold in health food stores--can reset that internal clock to a normal 24-hour cycle. The normal sleep-wake cycle in both blind and sighted people is longer than 24 hours.
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