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Aurora E.

@aurora_aee25

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Our Brains are Upgradable

Our minds are not static, but dynamic. The Brain has the capability to modify itself, change its structure, and to alter its biochemistry, at any age.

We can renew, rewire, heal and adapt our brains.

@aurora_aee25

5 Habits That Will Help Your Brain Stay in Peak Condition

medium.com

Juggling

You can improve your grey matter by learning a new, complex skill like juggling.

The simple act of juggling has recently been linked with better brain function. A new study reveals that learning to juggle may cause certain areas of your brain to grow.

Learn Something New

Even if it is just for 10 minutes before going to bed, you should be learning new stuff every day, a new skill, a new word, a new kind of idea or philosophy. Expose your brain to new frontiers.

Adequate Sleep

Have plenty of sleep to protect your brain from shrinking, avoiding any protein buildup (which eats brain cells) and the rapid reduction in brain functioning.

Exercising

Exercise rewires the brain. Keep your body active by taking any kind of daily exercise.

Even if you take a 20-minute walk or cycling, it can do wonders for your brain.

Meditation

Meditation can permanently rewire your brain to raise the levels of happiness.

The effects and benefits of meditation include stress reduction, improved concentration, a boost in memory and reduced emotional reactions.

The noise in our brains

With record-high instances of depression, anxiety, and substance abuse in the United States, and likely elsewhere, we still think antidepressants can be used to relieve some of the damage. But this may not be true. The use of antidepressants has inadvertently left many less able to feel empathy toward others, laugh, cry, dream, and enjoy life when we need it most.

A theory of brain function involving serotonin may point a way forward for effective treatment.

Why Making Our Brains Noisier Feels Good - Issue 96: Rewired - Nautilus

nautil.us

Impressive results have been found by using psychedelics, such as the psilocybin found in "magic mushrooms." A 2017 study showed a decrease in depressive symptoms of treatment-resistant individuals one week after their dose.

Functional magnetic resonance imaging used during the process shows that the mechanism of action is directly related to the increase in spontaneous brain fluctuations.

When our mind wanders, sleeps, or is under anaesthesia, our neurons are still firing all over the brain.

But through trauma, our spontaneous fluctuations can fall into negative resting-state patterns, almost like water that runs into a ditch. Antidepressants either cut off this water flow or reduce the functional connectivity, leaving around 70 percent of people who take antidepressants feeling an "emotional numbness".

Research shows that REM dreaming plays a vital role in regulating negative emotions and depression. Dreaming increases spontaneous fluctuations.

However, antidepressants, anti-anxiety agents, and many sleeping pills interfere with REM sleep and dreaming.

Neuroscientists have found that cognitive fluctuations are not only tolerated by neurons but that neurons amplify them and use the noisiness to create novel solutions to complex problems.

Researchers use studies of this noise in the brain to approach mental health treatment in new ways. Instead of reducing the noise with antidepressants, they are trying to increase them. This led to marked improvements and significant relief from depression and anxiety.

With so many people dealing with mental health issues, we need safe and reliable mental health solutions.

Getting plenty of REM sleep and having dreams unhindered by alcohol, ibuprofen can help. Even looking at natural fractals, like trees and plants, can contribute to flux therapy.

Brunch - a culinary tradition
  • Some food historians think that the meal has its roots in England's hunt breakfasts - a multi-course meal with goodies such as chicken livers, eggs, meats, bacon, fresh fruit, and sweets.
  • Others think that Sunday brunch comes from the practice of Catholics fasting before mass and then sitting down for a big midday meal.
  • Then some trace the origins of classic brunch dishes to New York's dining spots.

The Birth of Brunch: Where Did This Meal Come From Anyway? | Arts & Culture

smithsonianmag.com

The word "brunch" first appeared in print in an 1895 Hunter's Weekly article. The author suggested an alternative to the post-church Sunday meals favouring a lighter meal served late in the morning.

Brunch is a tradition that became popular in the United States in the 1930s. After WWII, large numbers of American married women entered the workforce. But they needed some relief on Sunday, thus the rise in popularity of Sunday brunch.

Right-Handed Vs Left Handed

Human hand preference is predictably a biological and genetic (hereditary) phenomenon, but we see that 85 percent of people are right-handed.

Researchers have identified the specific gene (D Gene) that occurs more commonly among the population which responsible for promoting right-hand preference. The C gene, which is less likely to occur within our gene pool, creates a coin-toss chance of an individual being left or right-handed.

What causes some people to be left-handed, and why are fewer people left-handed than right-handed?

scientificamerican.com

Just like the weather, nature made sure that there are enough influencing factors that cause changes in hand-preference, like external, societal and cultural pressures, to result in various possible genetic combinations and chance influences.

This makes the entire process of hand preference unpredictable by design.

A 1999 study that stated that consuming eggs can lead to cardiovascular disease(CVD) has now been updated. An extensive new study clearly shows no link between egg consumption and CVD risk.

Moderate consumption of eggs is healthy for us.

Moderate egg consumption gets the green light ... again

news.harvard.edu

The lack of sleep

Many successful people claim they need only a few hours of sleep each night.

But the lack of sleep is linked to health problems, including diabetes, depression, and heart disease. It impacts longevity and increases the risk of Alzheimer's.

Want to have a healthy brain? Make sure you're washing it every day

weforum.org

A recent study reveals that our bodies use the REM period of sleep - the dreamless and deep part - to cleanse our brain of toxins.

When the neurons in the brain quiet down, they need less oxygen and blood. At that point, cerebrospinal fluid - the liquid surrounding the brain - floods the space, cleaning the brain of potentially toxic chemical byproducts.

An increasing number of people are sleep-deprived. Being always busy contributes to a cycle of sleeplessness that impacts our health and holds us back from achieving.

A 2017 study found that a worker sleeping less than six hours a night loses around six working days a year to absenteeism.

A good workout

Suffering is not always part of exercise. Sweating, breathing hard, and being exhausted afterward are not measures of effectiveness or progress.

Hard workouts should be mixed with easy ones to create a whole program. Some days you will do hard workouts, but most of the time, an exercising program barely feels like hard work.

Exercise Shouldn't Feel Horrible

vitals.lifehacker.com

We should differentiate between what looks appealing and what is actually useful.

Ads for workout clothes seem to show people drenched in sweat. While hard training classes may be good for people to get fitter and stronger, it may feel intimidating to newcomers and is not always ideal.

It's okay if you love pushing yourself and find muscle soreness to be a pleasant reminder of your workout plan. But one day, you will not feel sore or fatigued.

It is more effective to have a goal in mind that you aim towards than to focus on your experiences.

Full Moon Insomnia And Weird Behaviors

Despite the lack of scientific evidence, many people believe in the moon's ability to change their behaviour and hold an uncanny power over them.

Hospitals, police stations and emergency phone lines report a big surge of cases on full moon nights, and they all cannot be wrong every time.

Full Moon Insomnia: Does The Moon Affect Your Sleep?

nosleeplessnights.com

A study published in The World Journal Of Surgery in 2011 explicitly pointed out that more than 40 per cent of medical staff is convinced that the lunar phases affect human behaviour.

This was later ‘debunked’ as subjective, citing a scientific analysis.

The academic literature in the 90s termed the effect of the lunar cycle on humans and even entire populations as the Transylvania Effect.

This is the belief that the moon produces psychological and physiological disturbances in the body and mind and can also be found in ancient literature.

  • A full moon causes heavy dew in the brain, according to Pliny the Elder, a Roman author, naturist and philosopher. A moist brain then behaves in a ‘lunatic’ manner. The word lunatic, of course, refers to our moon, which is called Luna.
  • Monseoc, another English word for lunatic, literally translates into ‘moon sick.’

Ancient calendars were based on the lunar cycles, with every new moon indicating a new phase.

The ancient agricultural societies had good use of the moon calendar, planning and arranging their crop harvest accordingly.

A 2013 research on a different topic retroactively reanalysed the sleep patterns of participants and combined them with the moon cycle to see if the moon is affecting the sleep pattern. They concluded that the lunar phase does influence human sleep, and works like gravity.

Many studies have continuously debunked the findings of sleep patterns being affected by the moon, but the fact is that the moon exerts a tidal force on water, and can very well have an effect on humans, even though it is not measurable scientifically.

Weighted blankets and their benefits

Whenever you feel overwhelmed, try alternative solutions to pills and checks with the doctors. Weighted blankets have proven to have a calming effect on individuals who find themselves having to deal with too much stress.

The blankets supposedly work in the same way tight swaddling helps newborns feel snug and secure so they can doze off more quickly. The blanket should simulate a comforting hug, in theory helping to calm and settle the nervous system.

Anxiety and stress weighing heavily at night? A new blanket might help

health.harvard.edu

While their benefits have not been scientifically proven, weighted blankets seem to be very much in demand these days. However, before deciding on using one, make sure that you really need it, as their price is high and their benefits may vary considerably.

If you find yourself struggling with your sleep, check out the various options to help you overcome this. You have plenty of choices, from using weighted blankets to relaxation techniques, that are only waiting for you to try them on.

Fresh food nutrients

Food is most nutritious at the point of harvest. After that, fresh produce starts degrading.

Once picked, that fruit or veg is using its own nutrients to keep its cells alive. Vitamin C found in produce is also sensitive to oxygen and light.

Frozen, fresh or canned food: What's more nutritious?

bbc.com

Refrigerating produce

Refrigeration slows down the process of nutrition degradation. The nutritional loss varies from product to product.

Spinach loses 100% of its vitamin C content in seven days at room temperature and 75% if refrigerated. Carrots lose 27% of their vitamin C content when stored at room temperature for a week.

However, when vegetables are frozen, including spinach, they lose significantly less vitamin C, because freezing pauses the process of oxidization.

Frozen foods nutrients

As soon as produce is harvested, it's a nutritional race against time.

Frozen produce has one problem: before it's frozen, it's blanched - heating food up for a few minutes at high temperatures to inactivate enzymes that degrade texture and color. Blanching also reduces nutrient content.

Canned foods

Tinned food uses a more intense heat treatment that decreases the nutrients more than frozen food. But nutrients in different kinds of produce degrade at different rates.

  • Foods with mostly water-soluble nutrients, including Vitamin C and B, are highly sensitive to heat and are better fresh.
  • Foods with mostly fat-soluble nutrients, like vitamin E and A, faired much better during heat treatment. Foods include carrots and tomatoes.

Although canned foods result in greater nutrient loss, it can be stable for years.

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