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Smarter brains are blood-thirsty brains A new project has overturned the theory that the evolution of human intelligence was simply related to the size of the brain -- but rather linked more closely to the supply of blood to the brain.
Vicarious Trauma: How Much More Can We Take? Another week, another tragedy. It’s hard to take it all in, let alone make any sense of it. How does bad news affect us? We can all be affected by vicarious trauma. That is the “one step removed” trauma that didn’t actually happen to us … ...
Psychopaths feel fear but see no danger, study finds Researchers from Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and Radboud University Nijmegen found proof that psychopathic individuals can feel fear, but have trouble in the automatic detection and responsivity to threat. For many decades fear has been put forth as a hallmark feature of psychopathy, the impairments in which would lead to bold risk-taking behavior. Sylco Hoppenbrouwers (VU [...]
Addiction cravings may get their start deep in the right side of the brain If you really want a drink right now, the source of your craving may be a pea-sized structure deep inside the right side of your brain, according to scientists at the Indiana University School of Medicine. Using two different kinds of advanced brain imaging techniques (PET and fMRI), the researchers compared the results of giving [...]
Bipolar adolescents continue to have elevated substance use disorder risk as young adults A follow up to a previous study finding an association between adolescent bipolar disorder and the incidence of cigarette smoking and substance use disorder finds that risk was even greater five years later, particularly among those with persistent bipolar symptoms. The report from a team of Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigators, published in the Journal of [...]
Meditation and vacation improves biological stress and immune pathways, study finds Scientists from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, the University of California, San Francisco, and Harvard Medical School used a rigorous study design to assess the biological impact of meditation compared to vacation. They examined the effect of meditation on gene expression patterns in both novice and regular meditators. The researchers found that [...]
Amputees’ brains remember missing hands even years later Our brains have a detailed picture of our hands and fingers, and that persists even decades after an amputation, Oxford University researchers have found. The finding could have implications for the control of next generation prosthetics. Team leader, Dr. Tamar Makin said: ‘It has been thought that the hand ‘picture’ in the brain, located in [...]
People with alcohol dependency lack important enzyme A research group under the leadership of Linköping University Professor Markus Heilig has identified an enzyme whose production is turned off in nerve cells of the frontal lobe when alcohol dependence develops. The deficiency in this enzyme leads to continued use of alcohol despite adverse consequences. The discovery is now published in the number-one ranked [...]
Single women with personal wealth more likely to become entrepreneurs than men A new economic study by the University of Stirling and Royal Holloway, University of London has found evidence that there is a big difference in cash flow problems faced by men and women in the UK. They found single women face more severe constraints to their incomings and outgoings, but that those single women whose [...]
Caffeine and its analogues revert memory deficits by normalizing stress responses in the brain A study published in the journal Scientific Reports from Nature publishing group, describes the mechanism by which caffeine counteracts age-related cognitive deficits in animals. The study coordinated by Portuguese researchers from Instituto de Medicina Molecular (iMM Lisboa) and collaborators from Inserm in Lille, France, along with teams from Germany and United States, showed that the [...]
Friends are no better than strangers in accurately identifying emotion in emails “OMG I just LOVE pizza.” Is this statement sarcastic? Is it heartfelt? As our everyday communication is increasingly text-driven, inferring emotion from messages is an important skill. If the receiver of the message is a friend, they should be able to understand the sender’s emotion better than a complete stranger. But a recent study by [...]
Creative mathematical tasks contribute to deeper learning in mathematics Working with creative mathematical tasks is important for pupils both to reflect on mathematics as well as for their subsequent test results. Being faced with creative tasks during exercise has evident effects on all pupils, both on weak and high performers. This according to studies at Umeå University in Sweden. “The results of my dissertation [...]
Study: ‘Morning people’ self-sabotage less at night, night owls’ less at sunrise A study by psychological researchers at Indiana University shows that people are more likely to undermine their performance at stressful tasks when they’re operating at “peak capacity” based on their preferred time of the day. The seemingly counterintuitive results, recently reported in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, are based on an investigation into the [...]
Your job is to live your life in a... Your job is to live your life in a way that makes sense to you, not to “them” Live your life in a way that makes sense to you.  Seems … ...
Researchers identify neural factors that predict adolescent alcohol use Researchers at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine have identified 34 neural factors that predict adolescent alcohol consumption. The list, based upon complex algorithms analyzing data from neuropsychological testing and neuroimaging studies, was significantly more accurate — approximately 74 percent — than demographic information alone. The findings are published in the current [...]
How can stress cause anxiety? Blame natural cannabinoids in the brain A new study shows what happens in the brain when stress triggers anxiety. The closely linked emotions of stress and anxiety are both generated in the limbic system of the brain. The study, conducted with rats, reports that stress contributes to a state of anxiety by prompting the production of a natural cannabinoid that disrupts [...]
How 30 Minutes of Exercise Every Day Can Boost... When we discuss the advantages of regular exercise, it’s usually the benefits to physical well-being that take centre stage, and for obvious reasons. Most are aware that physical exertion can aid cardiovascular health and protect against a plethora of hypertensive conditions. These reasons, alongside wanting … ...
Want Good Kids? Feed Them Right Ask any mother: A positive, well-behaved kid is much more pleasant to be around than an ill-tempered, cranky child. And while there’s a lot that goes into raising a well-behaved … ...
When Your Mother is a Narcissist Be the subject of your own life, not the object of someone else’s. Only children of narcissists know the insidiousness of growing up with the crazy emotional mind games and conditioning they were raised with.  Children of narcissists do not realize that they are being … ...
Nature Therapy Nature exposure does indeed soothe those worried parts of the brain into thinking less and relaxing more.