Online Insights on FIVEaa Sunday September 4 2011

September 4, 2011

This month we look at the importance of sleep for weight loss, of how to get our minds straight, take a global glimpse at Fathers Day and finish off with a handy way to use Lego.

Sleep adds weight AND makes you fatter

Lack of sleep bad for weight loss (Picture: iNform Health)
Lack of sleep bad for weight loss (Picture: iNform Health)

After reading this article, I have worked harder and harder at getting more sleep each night.

You can read the article for the technical terminology but in short, research from Stanford University has found that when we sleep less than five hours each night our hormones go crazy and end up making us not only feel hungry but feel less full.

As the writer summarises well, ‘so poor sleep essentially sets us up to feel hungry, crave food and have less satisfaction after eating. It’s not a wonder that people who sleep less have a higher BMI.’

However, the real shock came when researchers got healthy men and women to sleep just four hours in one night. They became dramatically insulin resistant the next day.

What does this mean? When you are insulin resistant it means your body cannot regulate blood sugar levels and that four hour night of sleep dropped insulin resistance to a level that was the equivalent of carrying 10kg of extra body fat. It just makes is harder all round.

The research also found that six nights of extreme lack of sleep can fast track you to Type Two Diabetes.

So, what can you do if you have trouble sleeping? The article gives a number of suggestions, including:

  • Not eating in the 2-3 hours before sleep
  • Keep your bedroom as dark as possible
  • Move every day – it helps your body regulate its hormones naturally

Read more about the importance of sleep for weight loss on the iNform site.

50 life secrets and tips

This article is a nice one to save so you can read through it whenever you need a philosophical shot in the arm.

It is a collection of suggestions and tips for regaining a healthy perspective on life whenever things feel a bit out of control.

Here are the top six samples:

  1. Memorize something everyday. Not only will this leave your brain sharp and your memory functioning, you will also have a huge library of quotes to bust out at any moment. Poetry, sayings and philosophies are your best options.
  2. Constantly try to reduce your attachment to possessions. Those who are heavy-set with material desires will have a lot of trouble when their things are taken away from them or lost. Possessions do end up owning you, not the other way around.
  3. Develop an endless curiosity about this world. Become an explorer and view the world as your jungle. Stop and observe all of the little things as completely unique events. Try new things. Get out of your comfort zone and try to experience as many different environments and sensations as possible.
  4. Remember people’s names so that they feel appreciated and for your own future benefit when you want something from that person.
  5. Get fit! It’s ridiculous to think that we have one body, one sole means of functioning, and people are too lazy to take care of themselves. Fit bodies lead to better health, confidence and more success with romantic endeavors. I’d say those are 3 very good reasons to get in shape.
  6. Learn to focus only on the present. The past is unchangeable so it is futile to reflect on it unless you are making sure you do not repeat past mistakes.

You can read the whole list on the High Existence website.

Fathers Day around the world

Given today is Fathers Day I thought it might be useful to look at how it is celebrated in other parts of the world.


In Germany, Father’s Day (Vatertag) is celebrated differently from other parts of the world. Regionally, it is also called men’s day. It is tradition, especially in the north and east of the country but much less so in the south and west, for groups of males (young and old but usually excluding pre-teenage boys) to do a hiking tour with one or more smaller wagons, Bollerwagen, pulled by manpower. In the wagons are wine or beer (according to region) and traditional regional food, Hausmannskost. Many men use this holiday as an opportunity to get drunk.


The Newar population (natives of Kathmandu valley) in Nepal honors fathers on the day of Gokarna Aunsi, which occurs in late August or early September, depending on the year, since it depends on the lunar calendar. The Western-inspired celebration of Father’s Day, that was imported into the country, is always celebrated in the same day as Gokarna Aunsi.

Hindus go to their temple, Buddhists go to theirs, both groups using the day to pay respect to their deceased fathers.


In Pakistan, there is no concept of a Father’s Day. Only those having had some American influence and connection follow the American third Sunday of June as a father’s day, and that too in families that are settled overseas.

United States

In the United States, Father’s Day has been celebrated since 1910.

More phone calls are made in the United States during Mother’s Day than during Father’s Day, but the percentage of collect calls on Father’s Day is much higher, making it the busiest day of the year for collect calls. Also, calls during both Mother’s Day and Father’s Day tend to last longer.

You can read the rest on Wikipedia.

Lego key holder

If you have trouble finding your keys, this little article has a novel solution.

You thread one slim lego piece to each key and then you fix a lego board to your wall somewhere handy. When you come home you can stick your key on the wall, waiting for you safely until you leave.

Adam Claridge, a school teacher up in the Barossa area who found this site, says: I like it ‘cos you could separate your keys into different sets and then just connect the sets together that you need for the day/outing with the lego blocks.

Take a look for yourself on the Gizmodo site.