The project, which began in 1938, has followed 268 Harvard undergraduate men for 75 years, measuring an astonishing range of psychological, anthropological, and physical traits – from personality type to IQ to drinking habits to family relationships to “hanging length of his scrotum” – in an effort to determine what factors contribute most strongly to human flourishing.
Marijuana users tend to be slimmer, have less insulin, and more good cholesterol, than those who do not smoke it. So, next question, should we reassess our attitude to the largely illicit drug if it’s possible it may have health advantages?
Current marijuana users had significantly smaller waist circumference than participants who had never used marijuana, even after adjusting for factors like age, sex, tobacco and alcohol use, and physical activity levels. They also had higher levels of HDL (“good cholesterol”). The most significant differences between those who smoked marijuana and those who never or no longer did was that current smokers’ insulin levels were reduced by 16 percent and their insulin resistance (a condition in which the body has trouble absorbing glucose from the bloodstream) was reduced by 17 percent.
Be warned though, both the risks and benefits of cannabis, are not fully understood, and there are certainly downsides to its use.
The World Health Organization has had a busy couple of weeks keeping track of three deadly strains across the world, and world travelers have probably been equally overcome with fear. And while the public-health group has been realistic in combatting a worldwide freakout – at least it’s been a bit more proactive than local governments in check-ups on novel coronavirus, Chinese bird flu, and now wild polio in Africa – the WHO did confirm over the weekend that the SARS cousin, NCoV, can spread between humans in the same room. If you’re already afraid of humans in the same room as you, here’s how to responsibly freak out on the viral news before it goes viral in the wrong way.
What would you prefer in an exercise regime? A longer workout of lower intensity, that will likely require you to leave the house and go along to the gym, or one that may constitute “seven minutes of steady discomfort”, but allow you experience said discomfort from the comfort of your own home?
In 12 exercises deploying only body weight, a chair and a wall, it fulfills the latest mandates for high-intensity effort, which essentially combines a long run and a visit to the weight room into about seven minutes of steady discomfort – all of it based on science. “There’s very good evidence” that high-intensity interval training provides “many of the fitness benefits of prolonged endurance training but in much less time,” says Chris Jordan, the director of exercise physiology at the Human Performance Institute in Orlando, Fla., and co-author of the new article.
Located just above the brain stem and found in all vertebrate brains, the hypothalamus is roughly the size of an almond in humans and is responsible for numerous functions, including growth, development, reproduction and certain metabolic processes.
Anyone know where the control panel for the hypothalamus is located then?
Oxidative stress is essentially what causes our hair to eventually turn white, but going grey may soon become a thing of the past, if a topical lotion that is said to undo this process, proves effective:
But a team of European researchers have developed a new compound called a “pseudocatalase” that reverses the oxidative stress responsible not only for greying hairs but also the skin condition vitiligo. A classic sign of ageing, the oxidative stress comes from an accumulation of hydrogen peroxide in the hair follicle which causes hair to bleach from the inside out, says the research report published online in The FASBEJ Journal.
Something I’ve often wondered about, how it is that sometimes a single glass of beer/wine/whatever can barely touch the sides, yet on other occasions leave you feeling distinctly… unsteady. While there are a number of possibilities, context can often have a lot to do with it:
Beyond the cues provided by a drink and its vessel, the physical environment in which a substance is consumed may also be important. See, for example, the study that found that subjects who were given alcohol in an office setting suffered more from its “deleterious effects” (meaning motor and cognitive impairment) than people who drank the same amount in a bar.
The way a person sneezes can be matched to their personality. Exceptions apply of course. I once knew someone who had a “loud explosive sneeze” yet was quite reserved. Maybe their sneezing “style” was a way of somehow compensating for this?
A person who’s demonstrative and outgoing, for instance, would most likely have a loud explosive sneeze, whereas someone who’s shy might try to withhold their sneezes, resulting in more of a Minnie Mouse-type expulsion.
Nine hours sleep a night seems to becoming the norm, in the US at least, and while the prospect may seem like bliss, especially on a Monday morning, and after what, for some, may have been a long weekend, oversleeping, as with too little sleep, likewise poses health risks:
Although there’s been lots of talk about society sleeping too little, not much attention has been paid to the problem of too much sleep. However, studies show that sleeping more than nine hours a night is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, thinking problems and premature death.