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So Much For A Clean Getaway
Men are lazy latherers, say Michigan State University researchers who found that 50% of guys in public college restrooms didn’t use sola, 35% just gave their mitts a quick rinse with water, and 15% of the slobs didn’t wash their hands at all.
Loo-goers spent an average of six seconds at the sink; the Centers for Disease Control advises soaping up for 20 seconds—say, two verses of “100 Bottles of Beer on the Wall.” And blow off the hot-air blower and opt for more-hygenic paper towels (the skin/paper friction actually removes germs).
Shoot The Moon-Please
If you’re having trouble drifting off, the culprit could be celestial. Researchers at Switzerland’s University of Basel discovered that during a full moon, sleep-monitored subjects took five minutes longer to nod off; slept for 20 minutes less; and had lower levels of melatonin, a sleep-regulating hormone.
“The lunar cycle seems to influence sleep, even when one isn’t aware of the actual moon phase,” says lead author Christian Cajochen, Ph.D.
A Toothless Treat?
It’s been drilled into your head to have your teeth cleaned twice a year—or else. But a University of Michigan review of 16 years of insurance claims found that for patients without high-risk factors for periodontal disease (smoking, diabetes, family history of gum disease), once a year was enough.
Though saying “ah” is never a bad thing: “Dentists may recognize symptoms of serious diseases—diabetes, cancer—which often manifest as signs inside the mouth,” says the Academy of General Dentistry’s John Comisi, D.D.S.
Midnight Oil = More Fat
Hitting the hay late and cutting sleep short could pack on pounds, says a study in the journal Sleep, which found that non-obese adults who slept from 4–8 a.m. for five straight nights gained more weight than those who slept from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m. (10 hours— nice), and were likelier to crave higher-fat snacks (we’re looking at you, potato chips).
“Sleep deprivation may lead to changes in hormones like ghrelin, which signals hunger,” says study author Andrea Spaeth. Something to keep in mind the next time you’re tempted by 2 a.m. Raymond reruns.
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