July 14, 2010

Keep Your Fingers Crossed

1 Superstitions May Improve Performance

Athletes, actors, and test-taking students have them. And while many pooh pooh them, superstitions may just work - by giving the believer more self-confidence and, by extension, improving performance, finds Lysann Damisch, U of Cologne who designed a set of experiments to prove this theory. Participants were asked to bring their lucky charms and, before taking a memory test, half of them were taken away. Those who held onto their talismans did better at the memory test than those who were divested of theirs. A follow-up test showed that self-confidence accounted for the difference in test scores. While we know that lucky charms don’t make us smarter, stronger or faster, there’s no harm in believing in them. So go ahead, put on your lucky underwear and ace your next challenge.

More at ScienceDaily.com | Posted 7 years ago by Melody Lesser

Tags: Superstitions, Self Confidence, Lucky Charms, University of Cologne, Lysann Damisch, Talisman

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (46%) / No! (54%)

Two to Four Cups of Black Tea OK

2 Tea Contains More Fluoride Than Thought

The most popular beverage in the world, black tea, contains more fluoride than previously thought, say Medical College of Georgia researchers. Consuming too much fluoride may cause advanced skeletal fluorosis, which is rare in the U.S. The bone disease, caused by excessive fluoride consumption, may manifest in joint and bone pain and damage. Researchers found that while most published reports say that black tea contains 1 to 5 milligrams of fluoride per liter, the real number may be as high as 9 milligrams per liter. Dr. Gary Whitford made the discovery after analyzing the tea consumed by four patients with advanced skeletal fluorosis. Each patient had consumed one to two gallons of tea daily for 10 to 30 years. A more appropriate amount of tea is two to four cups daily.

More at EureakAlert | Posted 7 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: Tea Calorie Counter

Tags: Black Tea Risks, Black Tea Fluoride Amounts, Advanced Skeletal Fluorosis, Dr. Gary Whitford, Bone Pain, Joint Damage, Weird Causes of Bone Pain, Drinking Too Much Tea

Read the Comments (1) | Was this Interesting? Yes! (46%) / No! (54%)

Scientists Answer Old Question

3 The Chicken Came First

British scientists believe they've finally answered the age-old question: What came first, the chicken or the egg? The scientists think that the chicken came first! Scientists from Sheffield and Warwick universities believe that they've found a protein inside the egg that is only produced by a hen's ovary, reports MSNBC. That means that the first egg must have come from a chicken. The scientists say that the protein, which speeds up shell formation, is essential for protecting the yolk while the chick grows inside the egg. Professor John Harding from Sheffield University's Department of Engineering Materials says that understanding shell formation can give clues for developing new materials.

More at MSNBC | Posted 7 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: Boston Market Chicken

Tags: Chicken Came First, Which Came First, Chicken or Egg, Answering Chicken and Egg Question, Sheffield and Warwick Universities

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

Prevents Insulin Resistance

4 Cashew Seed Extract an Effective Anti-Diabetic

A new study on the health benefits of cashew tree products on diabetes has found that cashew seed extracts could improve the body’s response to its own insulin. Extracts were taken of the leaves, bark, seeds and apples, but only the seeds were found to contain potential anti-diabetic properties. Cashew products may also be effective anti-inflammatory agents and could prevent insulin resistance from occurring. Diabetes, which affects about 220 million people, is caused when a person’s body does not respond to its own insulin and results in high blood sugar that can damage body organs and tissue. The study was conducted at the University of Montreal and the Universite de Yaounde and published in the journal Molecular Nutrition and Food Research.

More at Science Daily | Posted 7 years ago by Denise Reynolds

Previously: Eat Nuts to Lower Cholesterol

Tags: Blood Sugar, Diabetes, Insulin Resistance, Nuts, Cashews, Insulin

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

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