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Blind Leading the Blind: Medications, Violins, and Gluten We make decisions and form beliefs based on intuitions and expectations all the time, but often those intuitions are unreliable. Two recent studies—one about violins and the other about gluten sensitivity—illustrate how "blinding" in research keeps us honest and objective, especially when certain results are expected.
How Do You Treat Mental Illness in a Bonobo? Brian is a male bonobo who was born at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, but spent most of his life at the Milwaukee County Zoo. His childhood was rough, thanks to an abusive father, and as he transitioned into early adulthood, his prospects seemed grim....
The Best Predictor of Divorce What would you consider to the best predictor of divorce in a relationship? Is it betrayal or cheating, perhaps financial stress or is it boredom? Dr John Gottman, world renowned relationship expert, has researched this very topic and come up with one single quality that, more than any other, predicts the demise of a relationship. […]
What Makes an Athlete Clutch? With the New York Rangers’ win on the brink of elimination in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals, their star goaltender Henrik Lundqvist continued his spectacular play in a hope to lead them to a miraculous comeback. Lundqvist has been superb for the Rangers, stopping 92% of the shots...
The Role of Personality & Psychology in Healthy Eating We’re getting fatter. An intelligent understanding of personality can help us to understand why we eat what we eat, and what we can do about it. Openness For a start, openness to experience has been negatively linked to BMI — that is, being open can help keep you slim. There...
With the right rehabilitation, paralyzed rats learn to grip again After a large stroke, motor skills barely improve, even with rehabilitation. An experiment conducted on rats demonstrates that a course of therapy combining the stimulation of nerve fiber growth with drugs and motor training can be successful. The key, however, is the correct sequence: Paralyzed animals only make an almost complete recovery if the training is delayed until after the growth promoting drugs have been administered.
Anti-conformity Research Led to Freud's Best Sarcastic One-Liner There are plenty of tests that study conformity, but measuring anti-conformity is a tougher proposition. How do you measure something that is only evident after you make your influence felt? Researching this led to some interesting experiments, and the best line ever delivered by Sigmund Freud....
Stupid Mistakes and Perfect Solutions Anna was having anxiety attacks in the morning on and off for the past two years. Therapist: “What happened two years ago?” Anna: “I was robbed while I went out for my morning jog.” Anna’s morning anxiety can be understood as anger that has been internalized from a loss of...
Synchronized brain waves enable rapid learning The human mind can rapidly absorb and analyze new information as it flits from thought to thought. These quickly changing brain states may be encoded by synchronization of brain waves across different brain regions, according to a new study.
Ingredients of a Good Dad: What the Science Says It’s time for our moment in the sun: Father’s Day  -  the day we dads are officially honored before things go back to normal for the other 364 days of the year. While all that glory may feel undeserved at times, it turns out we might just matter more than...
When a stressful hospital stay makes you sick Beeping machines, frequent needle sticks, unpredictable waits and sleep deprivation are among the barrage of stressors that some doctors say contribute to post-hospital syndrome.
Teens are drinking, smoking and fighting less, but screen time is up The government’s latest study of worrisome behavior shows that teens are texting behind the wheel and spending a lot of time on video games and computers.
Slender Man Twelve year old girls charged with first-degree attempted homicide. Unbelievable! Are they responsible for their actions or do we need to look for other causes? Should we blame the victim? The weapon? The parents? Religion? Politics? The media? The girls attributed their behavior to the fictional character Slender Man. Perhaps we should also blame him...
How To Survive A BBQ, Party, Or Other Work Event Some people love office parties. Others would rather be stuck at an airport. With a toothache....
Ray Kurzweil’s ‘Hybrid Thinking’ Misunderstands the Brain Ray Kurzweil’s presentation of 'Hybrid Thinking' does not grasp the biological operations of the brain and consciousness. Sentience and the limbic-cortical play is what makes us human. His hybrid would make us robotic and more like a machine. I find this a scary proposition.
Father’s Day, Anxiety Day I love my father and the rest of my family, but, holidays have always brought me anxiety which I could never fully place, or understand. It starts when I go to Target and see the rows of father’s day cards waiting to be purchased. It triggers me knowing that the...
When good people do bad things: Being in a group makes some people lose touch with their personal moral beliefs Researchers find that being in a group makes some people lose touch with their personal moral beliefs. When people get together in groups, unusual things can happen -- both good and bad. Groups create important social institutions that an individual could not achieve alone, but there can be a darker side to such alliances: Belonging to a group makes people more likely to harm others outside the group.
Fungal protein found to cross blood-brain barrier In a remarkable series of experiments on a fungus that causes cryptococcal meningitis, a deadly infection of the membranes that cover the spinal cord and brain, investigators have isolated a protein that appears to be responsible for the fungus' ability to cross from the bloodstream into the brain.
‘We Would Need a Monument 5 Times Bigger than We can do more to prevent gun-related mental health deaths. But probably not the deaths you’re thinking of. You’re probably thinking of all those high-profile, media-driven mass shootings that apparently are becoming more and more common. You might even think the shooter’s mental health is a big component of identifying...
Why We “Click” With Some People and Not With I have always been fascinated by this question. With some of my friends, we can go for years without connecting. Yet, when we do come back together, it feels like no time has passed. With other friends, however, the process is much less organic. There seem to be inbuilt “requirements”...