Category Archives: Mind

Behavior Modification of Spouses

Are humans “as easily manipulated as dogs” using behavior modification techniques? Attention, frustrated wives: if you want your husband to start listening to you and stop leaving his socks on the floor, all you need is a little patience and a lot of mackerel. Such is the putative relationship advice of Amy Sutherland, a journalist… Read More »

Research shows how to boot your IQ

There are two broad categories of intelligence: crystallized and fluid. Crystallized intelligence is the  ability to utilize information, skills, and experience already learned. Fluid intelligence is the ability to identify patterns, solve novel problems, and use logic in new situations. It makes us  creative, aware, innovative, and visionary. To improve crystallized knowledge, learn: read, listen… Read More »

Meditation Improves Brain Function

There is mounting evidence from researchers at leading research institutions about the benefits of meditation for brain health and function. One of the latest series of studies, from researchers at Harvard, was explained at length in the Washington Post. The short story – meditation improves brain function and grows the brain in important ways. Sara… Read More »

Woman sees dragon faces

A 52-year-old woman whose rare condition was reported in The Lancet suffered from hallucinations that caused her to see human faces as dragons. “She could perceive and recognize actual faces, but after several minutes they turned black, grew long, pointy ears and a protruding snout, and displayed a reptiloid skin and huge eyes in bright… Read More »

Teleportation of consciousness rediscovered

Chew on this for a few years… Recent experiments by researchers at the Karolinksa Institutet in Sweden show that it is possible to rather easily trick the mind’s sense of self into leaving the body. Given visual cues and physical sensations of the right timing your brain will ‘teleport’ what you experience as ‘you’ into space, into a complete… Read More »

Is Anything Real?

This video includes a nice explanation of what we currently think memories are: the result of strengthening of connections between nerve cells.

New study suggests a better way to deal with bad memories

August Cassens – What’s one of your worst memories? How did it make you feel? According to psychologists, remembering the emotions felt during a negative personal experience, such as how sad you were or how embarrassed you felt, can lead to emotional distress, especially when you can’t stop thinking about it. When these negative memories… Read More »

Man can play back four symphonies in his head… At once!

Bob Milne is one of the best ragtime piano players in the world, but his talents go further than that – right into the land of amazing. Bob’s brain works a little differently to the rest of us, as he can compartmentalise various functions, which allows him to play complex piano pieces while carrying on… Read More »

Meditation Alters Genes Rapidly, Triggers Molecular Changes : Natural Society

If you are a practitioner of meditation, the results of a new study published in Psychoneuroendocrinology will likely come as no surprise. But for some scientists, the revelation that meditating can actually trigger molecular changes is groundbreaking. The researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Institute of Biomedical Research in Barcelona, Spain found subjects… Read More »

Scientists pinpoint age when childhood memories fade

Most adults struggle to recall events from their first few years of life and now scientists have identified exactly when these childhood memories fade and are lost forever. A new study into childhood amnesia – the phenomenon where early memories are forgotten – has found that it tends to take affect around the age of… Read More »

Mindfulness Meditation Helps Pain, Anxiety and Depression

People are increasingly turning to mindfulness mediation to manage health issues, and meditation classes are being offered through schools and hospitals. But doctors have questioned whether this ancient Eastern practice really offers measurable health benefits. A fresh review of the evidence should help sort that out. Meditation does help manage anxiety, depression and pain, according… Read More »

Happy New Year! Resolutions

The year 2014 is upon us! What will you give up in the new year? What will you add or do? Here’s my short list: Do community service daily: Blogging information to improve lives counts! Find a long term non-drug cure for anxiety/depression for a friend Heal the past, get therapy for unresolved anger and… Read More »

A New Map of How We Think: Top Brain/Bottom Brain

… research reveals that the top-brain system uses information about the surrounding environment (in combination with other sorts of information, such as emotional reactions and the need for food or drink) to figure out which goals to try to achieve. It actively formulates plans, generates expectations about what should happen when a plan is executed… Read More »

NYC psychic on trial on charges of conning clients

When a heartbroken ballroom-dancing instructor who had just lost a job and a lonely Singaporean businesswoman with an unrequited workplace crush wandered into a fortune-teller’s shop, the soothsayer foresaw lucrative opportunities – for herself, prosecutors said. Conjuring past lives, divining “negative energy” and promising to banish problems through techniques such as stuffing thousands of customers’… Read More »

Scientists Turn Hunger On and Off In Brain

Recently, scientists have been coming up with more and more, er, creative ways of combatting the potentially fatal effects of obesity. Soon though, people with overeating disorders might have a single solution that stops the problem at the root. We could just turn off part of their brain. In pioneering research, a team of scientists… Read More »

Link between gluten and Alzheimer’s

Dr. Mercola writes: Alzheimer’s disease is at epidemic proportions, with 5.4 million Americans—including one in eight people aged 65 and over—living with the disease. In the next 20 years, it is projected that Alzheimer’s will affect one in four Americans, rivaling the current prevalence of obesity and diabetes. There is still no known accepted cure… Read More »

Sleep Through Your Alarm

You may think you’re doing nothing at night, but to your brain, sleep means finally having some spare time to take stock of the day’s events. Freed from the distractions of recording new experiences, a deeply sleeping brain can organize and strengthen memories, especially emotional ones. For Katherina Hauner, a neuroscientist at Northwestern University Feinberg… Read More »

Brain Scans Show Why Psychopaths Don’t Feel Your Pain

Among other traits, psychopaths feel a lack of empathy when other people are in pain, and brain scans now reveal why that is. Psychopathy is a personality disorder marked by callousness, manipulation, sensation seeking and antisocial behaviors. About 23 percent of people in prison are psychopaths, compared with about 1 percent of people in the… Read More »

Using The Power Of Brain Waves To Prevent Car And Plane Hijackings

One of the many promising developments with practical applications emerging from neuroscience is something called “brain wave biometrics.” Everyone’s brain produces a distinctive pattern of alpha-beta brain waves – something like a neural fingerprint. If we could record those brain wave patterns for a given person, we’d have a reliable way of identifying that person… Read More »

Research renaissance offers new ways out of depression

As Susan sits chatting to a nurse in a London clinic, a light tapping sound by her head signals that parts of her brain are being zapped by thousands of tiny electro-magnetic pulses from a machine plugged into the wall. The 50 year-old doctor is among growing ranks of people with so-called treatment-resistant depression, and… Read More »

Prion-like proteins drive several diseases of aging, say leading neurology researchers

Prion-like protein aggregates drive the progression of several neurodegenerative diseases. a. Amyloid-beta plaques in Alzheimers. b. Neurofibrillary tangles (tau) in Alzheimer’s. c. Lewy bodies (alpha-synuclein) in Parkinson’s. d. TDP-43 inclusions in motor neurons in ALS. Many of the brain diseases associated with aging, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, are caused by specific proteins that misfold… Read More »

Study finds poverty reduces brain power

Poverty and the all-consuming fretting that comes with it require so much mental energy that the poor have little brain power left to devote to other areas of life, according to the findings of an international study published on Thursday. The mental strain could be costing poor people up to 13 IQ (intelligence quotient) points… Read More »

A Potential Cause of Autism? Key Enzymes Are Found to Have a “Profound Effect” Across Dozens of Genes Linked to Autism

Problems with a key group of enzymes called topoisomerases can have profound effects on the genetic machinery behind brain development and potentially lead to autism spectrum disorder (ASD), according to research announced today in the journal Nature. Scientists at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine have described a finding that represents a significant… Read More »

Brain Protein Is a Key to ‘Senior Moments,’ Study Finds

A protein in the brain could hold the key to reversing the age-related memory loss that causes “senior moments” of forgetfulness, Columbia University researchers report. Deficiency of a protein called RbAp48 in the hippocampus appears to significantly contribute to the memory loss that creeps up on you as you age, said study co-author Dr. Scott… Read More »

Facebook is indeed a downer, another study suggests

The average U.S. resident spends a nice chunk of their life – 32 minutes daily by one estimate – on Facebook. But the question of how Facebook really makes people feel – whether we’re a freshman in college, or a 45-year-old knitting enthusiast in the Midwest – that’s been a subject of much debate –… Read More »

MIT researchers reveal how the brain keeps eyes on the prize

As anyone who has traveled with young children knows, maintaining focus on distant goals can be a challenge. A new study from MIT suggests how the brain achieves this task, and indicates that the neurotransmitter dopamine may signal the value of long-term rewards. The findings may also explain why patients with Parkinson’s disease – in… Read More »

Sleep aid from the pumpkin patch? Ontario doctor creates all-natural solution

… one psychiatrist, inundated with patients with insomnia… [has] an entrepreneurial medical story with worldwide appeal. Stratford Ont.-based psychiatrist Dr. Craig Hudson said he started noticing about 10 years ago that many of his patients were complaining about their inability to sleep or stay asleep. Many of them were taking sleep medications or over-the-counter sleep… Read More »

The Anchoring Effect

Your teen is in desperate need of a new wardrobe. You set a day for a shopping trip. Lucky you. It’s not long until your daughter finds the perfect pair of jeans. Great, you tell her — until you check the price tag: $149.95. “Sorry honey, no deal. Too expensive. I’m sure you can find… Read More »

Scientists Make Mice “Remember” Things That Didn’t Happen

Scientists have created a false memory in mice by manipulating neurons that bear the memory of a place. The work further demonstrates just how unreliable memory can be. It also lays new ground for understanding the cell behavior and circuitry that controls memory, and could one day help researchers discover new ways to treat mental… Read More »

Are the Rich Jerks? See the Science

The rich really are different from you or me. They’re more likely to behave unethically. That’s the finding of a group of studies by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley. The research shows that people of higher socioeconomic status are more likely to break traffic laws, lie in negotiations, take valued goods from others,… Read More »

How to Trick Your Brain to Create a New Healthy Habit

Have you ever started a diet or exercise program but didn’t stick with it? If you’re like millions of other people, you’ve set out with the best intentions but failed to keep the momentum going. Here’s why relying on motivation and willpower doesn’t work (and what works instead). When you begin any new self-improvement program,… Read More »

UK Porn Ban: Prime Minister Declares War on Adult Content

David Cameron, the Prime Minister of the UK, has announced today that he plans to crack down on internet pornography and focus on making the internet a safer place for children and families. In his speech delivered today, Cameron made it very clear that he is passionate about his crusade against sexually illicit material, particularly… Read More »

The Napping EnergyPod Cradles You In Comfort While You Sleep At Work

As bizarre as it might sound that you’d sleep at work, it seems progressive companies around the world are adopting the concept. Taking short power naps during the day has been proven over and over again to help with memory, productivity, creativity and inspiration. Huffington Post, Google, Proctor & Gamble, Cisco, Ben & Jerry’s, AOL,… Read More »

Why good deeds don’t go unpunished

From an early age, we are taught that cooperation, generosity, and altruism are generally things we should strive for. But altruistic acts aren’t always lauded, and researchers have found that generous individuals are sometimes punished for their behavior. Studies suggest that people often react negatively to large contributions, are suspicious of those who offer help,… Read More »

Topless Women Protest Inside Mosque, Called ‘Whores’

Shouting slogans like “Free women” and “No Sharia,” a trio of topless female protesters from the infamous Ukrainian-based group FEMEN converged on a Swedish mosque Saturday and were promptly arrested. According to the Agence France-Presse, the women took off their long, black robes in the central Stockholm mosque, revealing their bodies painted with phrases including,… Read More »

Memory-boosting chemical is identified in mice

Memory improved in mice injected with a small, drug-like molecule discovered by UCSF San Francisco researchers studying how cells respond to biological stress. The same biochemical pathway the molecule acts on might one day be targeted in humans to improve memory, according to the senior author of the study, Peter Walter, PhD, UCSF professor of… Read More »

The quest to build a brain in the lab

“I’m a neuroengineer, and one of my goals is building brains.” Prof Steven Potter was disarmingly understated as he introduced himself. It’s not that tissue engineering is unusual. Nor even that doing it with neural cells should be an issue. If heart cells or skin cells can be reprogrammed, why not neurons? But “building brains”… Read More »