May 16, 2010

Might Also Explain Tony Clifton

1 Ball Lightning May Simply Be Hallucinations

Ball lightning refers to luminous spherical phenomena varying in size that over the centuries some observers have reported seeing during lightning storms. The existence of ball lightning as an actual phenomenon is disputed by scientists. YouTube is full of blurry videos of ball lightning that recall old UFO videos. Laboratory experiments to try to reproduce it have been inconclusive. Now come two researchers who say ball lightning really exists, but not as a physical phenomenon. Rather it is a hallucination caused by electrical influence on the brains of the observers. Or to quote Dr. Joseph Peer and Dr. Alexander Kendl from the University of Innsbruck in Austria, ball lightning may be perceived due to "[t]ranscranial stimulability of phosphenes by long lightning electromagnetic pulses."

More at ArVix.org | Hat tip to Australian Broadcasting Corporation | Posted 8 years ago by Mark

Tags: Ball Lightning, Lightning Storms, UFOs, Crop Circles, University of Innsbruck, Dr. Joseph Peer, Dr. Alexander Kendl, Hallucinations

Read the Comments (3) | Was this Interesting? Yes! (42%) / No! (58%)

So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades

2 Young Eyes More Vulnerable to Damaging Sunlight

"Yet another thing for overprotective parents to spend money on: high-end sunglasses. Of course, kids don't even go outdoors these days anyway."
- ChrisB in the comments

May is UV awareness month, so there’s no better time to make sure the kids are protected from the harmful ultraviolet A and B (UVA and UVB) damage that can accompany sun exposure. Prevent Blindness America warns that children are especially vulnerable to the damaging rays because they usually spend more time outside than adults, and the lenses of younger eyes are more transparent, allowing a greater degree of short wavelength light into the eye. Sunglasses that block out at least 99 percent of both UVA and UVB radiation are recommended, and parents should insure that sunglasses fit their child's face properly and shields the sun's rays from all directions. Sunglasses should always be composed of impact-resistant polycarbonates, rather than glass, and should be scratch-free.

More at Yahoo Health | Posted 8 years ago by Marty Shaw

Tags: Kids, UVA, UVB, Ultraviolet Light, Eyes, Sunglasses

Read the Comments (1) | Was this Interesting? Yes! (47%) / No! (53%)

Think Twice About That Burger

3 High Fat Meals Bad for Asthma

People with asthma would be wise to avoid high-fat meals, reports researchers at the University of Newcastle in Australia. The new findings will be presented at the ATS 2010 International Conference in New Orleans. "This is the first study to show that a high-fat meal increases airway inflammation, so this is a very important finding," said Dr. Lisa Wood, Ph.D., research fellow of the University of Newcastle. Asthma sufferers in the study who ate a high-fat meal had increased airway inflammation hours later. A surprise finding was that the fatty meal, consisting of fast-food burgers and hash browns, also inhibited response to Ventolin (albuterol), an asthma medication.

More at EureakAlert | Posted 8 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: FDA Cautions on 4 LABA Asthma Inhalers

Tags: Asthma Triggers, Fatty Food and Asthma, High Fast Food Bad for Asthma, Fatty Food Affects Asthma Medicine, Ventolin, Albuterol, University of Newcastle in Australia, Dr. Lisa Wood, Increased Airway Inflammation

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (50%) / No! (50%)

Post Biggest Loser Weight Loss

4 Subway Pays Woman $1,000 Per Pound to Diet

Shay Sorrells, who appeared in NBC's The Biggest Loser in May of 2009, lost 172 pounds during her time on the show. The pounds Sorrells shed amounted to more than one-third of her body weight. While she didn't win the competition, Sorrells did go on to lose another 100 pounds after the show, reports MSNBC. Subway restaurant agreed to compensate Sorrells $1,000 for each pound she lost after the show. Sorrells, who was the most obese woman ever to take part in the show, is expected to appear on The Biggest Loser finale on May 25 to collect her winnings and show off her new slimmer self.

More at MSNBC | Posted 8 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: The Biggest Loser Couples Compete for a Spot in the Final Four

Tags: The Biggest Loser, Shay Sorrells, Subway Restaurant, Sponsors of the Biggest Loser, Most Obese Woman, Biggest Loser, Biggest Losers Return, The Biggest Loser Finale

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (47%) / No! (53%)

Is Your Coworker a Psychopath?

5 Testing for Psychopaths at Work

"My boss is a psychopath. And so are many of our customers."
- Susan in the comments

Researchers warn that some of your coworkers could have psychopathic traits, but it's probably nothing to worry about. Professor Robert Hare from the University of British Colombia believes that "corporate psychopaths" have an arrogance and focus that assists them with success, reports BBC. He worked with psychologist Paul Babiak to develop the Business Scan 360 test, which involves interviewing people who work with the person in question to get a 360 degree look into their personality. At present, Hare and Babiak are interviewing people convicted of embezzlement or fraud to obtain a benchmark of an undesirable employee. They'll also interview normal employees and highly successful ones to better distinguish what traits may lead to career success or undesirable behavior.

More at BBC | Posted 8 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Tags: Business Scan 360 Test, Psychologist Paul Babiak, Testing for Undesirable Employees, Finding Psychopaths at Work, Professor Robert Hare, University of British Colombia

Read the Comments (1) | Was this Interesting? Yes! (48%) / No! (52%)

It's Really in Your Mind

6 Change Thinking Patterns for Treating Depression

Breaking negative thought patterns could be key to helping people with severe depression. Researchers found that moderate to severely depressed people displayed more improvement when they were taught by therapists to change how they think, rather than how they behave. Daniel Strunk, assistant professor of psychology at Ohio State University and co-author of the study, says that cognitive (thinking) strategies, rather than behavioral approaches, may help patients improve the most during the first critical weeks of therapy. The study was also conducted by Melissa Brotman of the National Institute of Mental Health and Robert DeRubeis of the University of Pennsylvania. Study results are published online in Behaviour Research and Therapy, and will be available later in the print edition.

More at Science Daily | Posted 8 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: Therapy via Telephone Helps with Depression, Depression Drug Side Effects Not Reported

Tags: Ohio State University, Depression Treatment, Severe Depression, Moderate Depression, Cognitive Therapy, Changing Negative Thought Patterns, Depression Study, Melissa Brotman, National Institute of Mental Health, Robert DeRubeis, University of Pennsylvania, Daniel Strunk

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (49%) / No! (51%)

Large Study Reveals Little

7 Cellphone Cancer Link Still Uncertain

Researchers still don't know if there's a link between cellphone use and brain cancer. A 10-year international study, conducted by the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer, didn't provide the answers many were hoping for. Researchers were only able to conclude that there were "suggestions" that using a cellphone more than 30 minutes per day may increase the risk of a rare, but deadly form of cancer called glioma. However, researchers warn that study errors, including biased participants, flawed the research. Researchers said they couldn't directly blame cellphone radiation for tumors. The study found no connection between cellphone use and a typically benign tumor called meningioma.

More at Washington Post | Posted 8 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: Can Technology Help People Lose Weight?

Tags: Meningioma, Glioma, International Agency for Research on Cancer, Cellphone Use and Cancer, Cellphone Cancer Link, Cellphone Cancer Study, Deadly Brain Cancer, Benign Brain Cancer, Glioma Causes

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (41%) / No! (59%)

Pollution May Raise BP

8 Air Pollution Affects Blood Pressure

Living in an urban area may cause higher blood pressure, say researchers from the University of Dusiburg-Essen in Germany. According to Dr. Barbara Hoffman, senior author of the study, both systolic and diastolic blood pressure was higher in people living in polluted areas. The pollution and blood pressure connection remained even after researchers took into account other factors like gender, smoking, age and weight. Hoffman noted that the increases were stronger in women than men. Researchers don't believe that street noise in urban areas accounted for the increased blood pressure observed in the study. Research findings will be presented at the ATS 2010 International Conference in New Orleans.

More at EureakAlert | Posted 8 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Tags: Air Pollution, Effects of Air Pollution, Dangers of Air Pollution, Pollution Affects Blood Pressure, Risks for High Blood Pressure, ATS 2010 International Conference, University of Dusiburg-Essen, Barbara Hoffman, Diastolic Blood Pressure, Systolic Blood Pressure

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (53%) / No! (47%)

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