5 Secrets About Our Brains

Secret 1: 60% of the brain are Fat

Yup, our brains are made up of 60 percent fat, says Dr. Michael Green, a research psychologist at Aston University.

To function optimally, our brains need to maintain this level of fat. A lower amount of fat, in fact, can lead to neurological disorders. Dieters beware!

Secret 2: Our brains beed gut bacteria

According to new research, the composition of gut bacteria can affect brain development and adult behavior.

Gut bacteria can affect autoimmune diseases like multiple sclerosis as well as developmental disorders like autism.

Secret 3: Our brains also have an internal sense of direction

According to new research carried out by the University of Massachusetts Medical School, humans may have an internal compass that allows them to navigate across the earth without an external device.

The study found that monarch butterflies have an internal sense of direction that allowed them to get from one point to another even in the absence of light by sensing the Earth's magnetic field.

Because we share a similar crypotochrome gene with monarch butterflies, it's possible that we have this magnetic sensing ability too.

Secret 4: Children's Brains are more active than Adults’

Three-year-old brains are two-and-a-half times more active than adult brains, says a report by the California Early Childhood mentoring program.

Because children are born with blank brains, each experience is completely new. In the first three years of his or her life, a child builds approximately 1 trillion synapses.

Secret 5: Our conclusion on time perception depending on how far the event is from us

New research found that time perception changes depending on how close or far an event is from us.

* Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Do you Know Really? Sugar Could be The Key to Lose Weight

Eating fresh fruit and vegetables helps people resist the temptation of waist-expanding treats, scientists have found.

When our supplies of glucose - found in carbohydrates - drop we begin to lose our ability to control desire, while our urge to eat increases.

The lack of glucose – which is used to power the brain – makes us helpless against the urge to reach for high-calorie foods, researchers said.

Obese people are particularly vulnerable, with even the slightest drop in glucose prompting irresistible cravings for carbohydrates, from which we get most of our sugar.

These can be "good" carbs, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, brown rice and pasta and wholemeal bread, or "bad" varieties which include white bread and sugar, fizzy drinks, cakes, crisps and other packet snacks.

Making sure the brain's glucose levels do not drop could be the secret to staying slim, a study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation suggested.

* Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

A New Monitor Chip will Change the Way Diabetics Live

Guide: British researchers now are testing a new type of chip, this tiny device could help doctors to monitor the blood glucose level of diabetes all around the clock. Allegedly, this technology has good prospects, it can also be used as a monitor device for other chronic diseases.

A small, insignificant looking square pad, the size of a finger nail, could change the way diabetics live. Almost invisible, on the surface of the pads are scores of needles.

Each micro-needle, which measures one millimeter long, contains its own sophisticated sensor, or nano wire; completely invisible to the naked eye. Together, the needles are in a constant cycle of collecting and analyzing the blood of the patient it's attached to.

You won't be able to feel it either according to its inventors, who say it's designed to stay permanently and painlessly in contact with a patient's arm.

The technology, being developed at Swansea University, is in its infancy stage. The team is now in the middle of developing a transmitter which will be able to send an SMS message to a hospital, or to relatives as soon as a patient is at risk of a hypoglycemic attack.

The idea is to ensure that there is no delay in providing emergency treatment, even if the diabetic is alone and unconscious. Dr Vincent Teng is Swansea University's nano-technology expert.

"The length of a needle is about 1mm and they have a diameter of about 15 microns. That offers a painless experience to a patient when using it. These needles will be attached to the arm of the patient and blood sample will be drawn using these micro-needles. The sensors, which are developed using nano-wire technology, will be integrated into the micro-needles, and that offers painless detection of blood glucose, and continuous monitoring of blood glucose."

An undetected hypoglycemic attack can prove fatal for people with type 1 diabetes. Sufferers need to take insulin injections, meaning they must test their blood glucose levels up to 10 times every day. Such a device would mean they wouldn't need to carry blood sugar testing equipment around with them at all times.

The micro-needles are just part of the work from the University's Health Informatics Research laboratories, directed by Professor David Ford. He says the device being developed here is aimed at ensuring that diabetics are not at risk of fainting, or going into shock, when they're asleep, or alone.

Ford says the system of continual monitoring is an exciting development.

"If a patient was to wear this 24 hours a day it would be an enormous benefit in terms of understanding the way that their blood glucose responds to what they eat and what they do during the day, and potentially could have a role in perhaps automating the introduction of insulin into the bloodstream, which is the mechanism that is used naturally to moderate blood glucose levels."

This technology for diabetics is still a few years away from being tested. But Teng says that the team hopes the same system can be widened to provide pioneering care applications for people who suffer from heart disease and strokes.

"With the use of the right bio markers on the nano wires we'll be able to use this technology to detect other chronic diseases. Say, for example, heart disease, asthma, and also stroke, which is very common. In fact the number of people who suffer from this chronic disease has increased rapidly in recent times."

The WHO says non-communicable diseases, or NCDs, are the leading cause of death in the world. That's 63 per cent of all deaths each year.

* Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis 


How Hard You Can Against the Temptation of Food?

You might have thought resisting that piece of chocolate cake or extra biscuit was simply a matter of exerting a little will power. But for some of us it’s much more difficult than that – because of the way our brains are wired.

Scientists have found that a key part of the brain which stops the body from acting on impulse – and gorging – does not function as well in those who are overweight or obese.

A study by scientists from Yale University has shown that falling glucose levels lead to a loss of self-control in the brain which subsequently lead to parts of the brain craving high-calorie food such as cakes, biscuits or crisps.

In obese people the effect may be even more pronounced, so they are driven to eat by the slightest drop in glucose. Their uncontrollable cravings for treats are triggered by falls in blood sugar

Glucose is normally obtained from carbohydrate foods, which can come in healthy and less healthy forms.

Scientists believe the phenomenon occurs because of the brain's huge demand for glucose, which it needs as energy fuel.

'Good' carbs include fresh fruit and vegetables, brown rice and pasta, nuts, wholemeal bread, and beans.

Among the 'bad' varieties are white bread, white sugar, biscuits, cakes, crisps and other packet snacks, carbonated soft drinks, ice cream and corn syrup used in processed foods.

Ensuring adequate brain glucose levels - in a healthy way - might make it easier to stay slim, the research suggests.

“The key seems to be eating healthy foods that maintain glucose levels. The brain needs its food,” said Professor Rajita Sinha, from Yale University in the U.S., who led the study.

The research is reported today in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.Prof Sinha's team manipulated blood sugar levels in a group of volunteers with intravenous injections of glucose.

At the same time, participants underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans of their brains while being shown pictures of high-calorie and low-calorie food, and non-edible items.

The scans showed that when glucose levels fell, two 'reward' regions of the brain that make certain activities pleasurable induce a desire to eat.

But the most pronounced reaction was seen in the prefrontal cortex, the 'sensible' part of the brain that prevents people acting on impulse. When glucose levels lowered, the prefrontal cortex lost its ability to reign back the urgent 'eat' signals.

* Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

In Infrared Light Everyone Looks Terrifying

Infrared Light is emitted by an object because of what is happening at the atomic level. Using a typical camcorder, you can see the infrared light from a remote control.

Like humans, most animals rely on visible light for seeing, and plants rely on it for photosynthesis. In addition to the light that's visible to us, the sun also radiates ultraviolet and infrared light.

Snakes have infrared sensors, and bees can see some ultraviolet light, but they're among the few exceptions to the rule. Why are we earth dwellers so attuned to visible light, instead of some other segment of the spectrum?

Why don't we see ultraviolet or infrared?

The traditional answer to this question was that most of the sun's radiation is visible light, so our eyes evolved to see those wavelengths. However, the sun also gives off a whole lot of infrared radiation. What would it be like if our eyes evolved to see infrared light?

If we could see infrared, the sky would appear dark, and grass and trees very bright. Our veins would shine darkly through our skin, and warm blooded creatures would be very easy to spot. That would be a great advantage not only for predators on the prowl, but also escaping prey.

What's visible light?

No one knows for sure why animals and plants on earth evolved to perceive visible light, rather than infrared. One theory is that maybe there's no biochemical reaction that would allow us to translate infrared light into a visual image we can perceive, as we do with visible light. Or, maybe evolution just hasn't found it yet.

"Three things I like the most in the world: The sun,the moon and you.The day is the sun,the night is the moon and you are eternity."

* Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Feel Free to Shake Hands

In China, July is the graduation season, and some scientists got to wondering whether the folks who shake hundreds of hands while passing out diplomas run the risk of coming away with a fistful of infectious microbes, such as Staphylococcus aureus.

Good news turns out the risk of being passed a disease-causing bacterium while pressing the flesh is pretty remote. That’s according to a study in the Journal of School Nursing.

"Quantifying School Officials’ Exposure to Bacterial Pathogens at Graduation Ceremonies Using Repeated Observational Measures", said Dave.

The researchers swabbed the palms of 14 school officials before and after graduation. They found that before the ceremony, and even after a slathering of sanitizer, hands were home to plenty of nonharmful bacteria. On the infectious scorecard, one dean brought Staph aureus to a commencement.

Two others at a different ceremony walked away with it. And one of those samples came from a left hand, which didn’t participate in any of the meeting or greeting. So the math says that of more than 5,000 handshakes, just one may have passed along something less welcome than a sheepskin.

So if you’re graduating this summer, don’t fear handshakes, it is not a big deal.

Wait, while you wonder if the last person who wore that robe had anything contagious...

* Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Now We’d Like to Vindicate for Bedwetting

Guide: Bed-wetting, this is not but a pleasant topic. Bedwetting now plagued 5,000,000-7,000,000 American children. If we can not explain why those children who are unluckily suffered from bedwetting bed, then let us at least to explore out the reasons for bed-wetting. Nowadays scientists believe that bedwetting is based on physiological factors, and some children suffer from common curable diseases or have structural defects.

Never a happy topic, bed wetting is a very distressing problem for five to seven million American kids. If we can’t explain why some people like to pick on these kids, can we at least shed some light on what causes bed wetting?

At one time, people punished bed-wetters for acting badly, but today scientists believe that this condition has several physical causes. Some kids suffer from problems like infections or anatomical defects that can be easily identified and treated.

Other causes are harder to pin down. One promising area of research is on the kidney hormone ADH. We all produce more ADH hormone at night. ADH signals the kidney to slow down production. This is why we don’t go to the bathroom for eight hours at night but could never last that long between bathroom breaks during the day.

Some children who wet their beds do not produce enough ADH at night. When given drugs that boost this hormone, they stop bed wetting.

Finally, some kids simply have small bladders and an undeveloped nervous system. The good news is that these kids, like most bedwetters, will grow out of it as their bodies develop and mature.

* Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Be Careful of Your Mobile Phone!

Recently, The WHO(World Health Organization) has added to the debate over the risk of brain cancer from mobile phone use. Last week the WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer listed the signals from wireless devices as "possibly carcinogenic." This finding puts cell phones in the same risk group as the pesticide DDT -- but also in the same group as coffee. So, it seemed that when mobile phone take us convenience, the same time its dangers can not be ignored easily.

A group of thirty-one scientists from fourteen countries made the finding. The announcement came at the end of a meeting at the agency's headquarters in Lyon, France.

The concern is that extended contact with radiofrequency electromagnetic fields may increase a user's risk for glioma. Glioma is the most common form of brain cancer.

The scientists spent a week examining existing research. Dr. Jonathan Samet from the University of Southern California led the group.

JONATHAN SAMAT: "We also carefully consider the sources of exposure of populations to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields, the nature of these fields as they come from various devices, including wireless phones, and we look carefully at the physical phenomenon by which exposure to such fields may perturb biological systems and lead to cancers."

He says the finding that there could be some risk means scientists need to keep a close watch for a link between cell phones and cancer.

The statement noted that the number of mobile phone users is large and growing, especially among young adults and children. Mobile phone subscriptions are estimated at five billion worldwide.

The scientists called for more research into long-term, heavy use of mobile phones. They also suggested taking measures to reduce exposure to the signals, like hands-free devices or texting.

Camilla Rees from an American group called Electromagnetic Health praised the report but says wider research is needed.

CAMILLA REES: "We’ve only had this technology around for about fifteen years, and most carcinogens will take about several decades, thirty-forty years to develop a cancer. So based on some early indications, scientists are projecting that we’re actually going to be seeing a tsunami of brain cancer unless we do something to educate people to lower their exposure to this kind of risk."

CTIA, the International Association for the Wireless Telecommunications Industry, dismissed the report. The group pointed out that no new research had been done. And it noted that the cancer research agency has given the same finding to things like coffee and pickled vegetables.

Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Just How Big a Deal is Milk Drinking?

[Guide] Recently, on the meeting of The Development of the Washington Association of Science, Sarah Waters Cove come from University of Pennsylvania pointed out that in fact, speaking for children and adults, when a type of protein called lactase expressed in the body, they can digest milk, body do not express this enzyme can not digest this complex sugar.

“The ability to digest milk as adults, and as infants, actually, is due to the expression of an enzyme called lactase.” That’s the University of Pennsylvania’s Sarah Tishkoff at the AAAS conference in Washington, D.C., on February 20th, talking about the recent evolution of lactose tolerance in different human populations within the past 9,000 years. “Individuals who don’t express this enzyme can’t digest that complex sugar.”

Can we put a number on the evolutionary importance of lactose tolerance? “The selective pressure was quite remarkable. We actually estimated it to be about 10 percent. So you’re more likely to have 10 percent more offspring essentially.”

How strong is that? Look at population genetics to see how fast a trait will spread that develops in one individual in a population and that confers a 10 percent reproductive advantage. A mathematical analysis reveals that in just 100 generations, such a trait can be found in 95 percent of the individuals in the population.

That time period could be less than 2,000 years for humans. “I’m often asked the question, are humans still evolving? I would say the answer is absolutely yes.”

Now, maybe we cam say: Digesting milk is No longer a Problem?

Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

New Results show Young Patients with Breast Cancer can Recovery Earlier

Guide: As we all know, breast cancer has been ones of major “killers” to many ladies, and the age women suffer the sick turn to more and more younger, recently, the latest medical research results show that early breast cancer can be found in young women earlier, so that they can be cured earlier, and more women can re-own a healthier body, as well as more happy times.

Have you ever felt lumps under the skin on the sides of your neck when you were sick? Those might be lymph nodes. They can get swollen and painful but their job is to fight infection. Lymph nodes are part of the body's defenses known as the lymphatic system.

This complex system throughout the body makes and transports a protective fluid called lymph. Lymph is made of white blood cells, proteins and fats.

In a patient with breast cancer, the cancer can spread to the large number of lymph nodes under the arm. Doctors have traditionally removed many of these lymph nodes in the hope of removing all the cancer.

But the latest research finds nothing to gain by removing so many lymph nodes.

Doctors have two choices when breast cancer starts to spread. They can do what is called a sentinel node biopsy. They remove the main growth and one or two lymph nodes nearest to it.

Or they can take more aggressive action and remove a lot of lymph nodes. But that can lead to shoulder pain and permanent swelling of the arm.

Dr. Armando Giuiliano at the John Wayne Cancer Institute in Santa Monica, California, was a leader of the study. He found that a sentinel node biopsy can be enough to eliminate all of the cancer. And the patient does not need to stay in a hospital to have it done.

Dr. Giuliano and researchers at other American cancer centers studied almost nine hundred breast cancer patients. In each case, the cancer had spread to no more than two lymph nodes.

Half of the women had the traditional surgery. Doctors removed an average of seventeen lymph nodes. The other half had the simpler operation with just one or two nodes removed. Then both groups received radiation treatment and chemotherapy drugs.

Doctor Giuliano says rates of survival five years later showed that the less invasive operation was just as successful as the more aggressive action.

Doctor Giuliano said: "The five-year survival was about ninety-two percent regardless of which operation. And, wonderfully, women who had the sentinel node biopsy alone did just as well as the women who had the more radical operation."

The study appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Some experts say the findings could change the way surgeons treat early breast cancers that have spread to the lymph nodes. But other doctors say they want more proof before they make a change.

Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Women Suffer More when Pretending to Be Happy

Pretending to be happy can actually make you more miserable - especially if you're a woman, according to a new study.Researchers found that walking around with a forced smile and faking happiness simply led to people feeling gloomier. So, putting a brave face on your woes could actually be counterproductive.

The research found that women suffered more than men when pretending to be happy.Psychologist Dr Brent Scott, who led the study, said employers should take note because forcing workers to smile when dealing with the public can backfire.He said: "Smiling for the sake of smiling can lead to emotional exhaustion and withdrawal, and that's bad for the organisation."

Dr Scott said the research showed customer-service workers who 'fake smile' throughout the day worsen their mood and then withdraw from work, so their productivity drops.He added: "Bosses may think that getting their staff to smile is good for the organisation, but that's not necessarily the case."Dr Scott, assistant professor of management at Michigan State University, analysed a group of bus drivers during a two-week period.The study is one of the first of its kind to examine emotional displays over a period of time and compare the different effect that has on men and women.

His team examined the effects of surface acting - or fake smiling - compared to what was termed 'deep acting', or cultivating positive emotions by recalling pleasant memories.

Dr Scott said: "Women were harmed more by surface acting, meaning their mood worsened even more than the men and they withdrew more from work."However, they were helped more by deep acting, which means their mood improved more and they withdrew less."

Dr Scott suggested women tend to suffer more when pretending to be happy because they are expected to be more emotionally expressive than men.Therefore, faking a smile while feeling down is more likely to go against their normal behaviour and cause more harmful feelings.

Although, 'deep acting' seemed to improve mood in the short-term, Dr Scott says it's not a long-term solution to feeling unhappy.He said: "You're trying to cultivate positive emotions, but at the end of the day you may not feel like yourself anymore."

Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Do Not let your Tears with Him at the Night

Guide: In author’s opinion, tears are one of detoxification recipe, and I always can not help to move with those girls who cried very pitiful. But now as reported by the journal “Science” that they found women’s emotional tears would produce physiological effects on men’s sexual arousal…

We produce tears in response to insults to the eyes --- the sting of onion fumes, a tiny insect that flew into your cornea. But we also produce emotional tears. And it’s long been known that emotional tears are chemically different from poke-in-the-eye tears. Now researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel find that women’s emotional tears have definite physiological effects on men. The work appears in the journal Science.

The researchers knew that mouse tears contain pheromones that convey information to other mice. So they looked for similar kinds of signals in human tears.

Two women volunteered to watch sad movies and have their tears collected. Twenty-four men were then asked to sniff the movie tears or a saline solution. The men noted no particular smell in either sample of salty water. But the men’s own body chemistry could tell the difference.

When the men looked at emotionally neutral images of women’s faces after sniffing real tears, they reported less sexual attraction. The men also had lower levels of testosterone and less physiological arousal after smelling emotional tears compared with saline. Future studies will look at men’s tears, once researchers have collected enough videos of heartbreaking losses in big football games.

Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis

Mobile Phones can Diagnose STD and Measuring Blood Pressure Soon

Guide: Today, functions of mobile phone turn to more and more powerful, it is no longer just a convenient communication tool, all aspects in people’s living have close relations with mobiles, perhaps in the near future, mobile phones can help people to detect various diseases anywhere and anytime, which will be more conducive to help people to prevent and diagnose various diseases, thus produce more benefits to people's health.

Mobile phone technology is quickly changing the way the world operates. Today, we tell about two new projects involving mobile health, also known as m-health.

Doctors and technology experts in London are developing a new way to test for sexual infections. The new device uses mobile phones and computers to help people find out if they have been infected with a sexual disease. People will be able to perform the test in the privacy of their own homes.

People place urine or saliva on a small piece of paper. They place the test strip in a small device that contains a computer chip. Then they place the device in their mobile phone or a computer for testing.

Within minutes, they receive information telling them if they have a sexual disease. And they receive advice on what to do next.

Claudia Estcourt is with Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry. She is also part of the research team working on the project.

CLAUDIA ESTCOURT: "This isn't designed to replace traditional clinics. This is really opening testing up to people who might find it embarrassing or difficult to get into their clinic. And this might be a much quicker, easier option for them --- that they can be assured of very accurate results."

Health experts say many young people are too ashamed to visit a clinic to be tested. This increases the risk of them passing on sexual diseases. The researchers hope the tests will help persuade people to be tested and reduce the number of sexually transmitted infections.

Dr. Estcourt says the project is still seven to ten years away from completion. But she says it holds great promise for the future.

CLAUDIA ESTCOURT: "Clearly one of the major implications of something like this would be for use in developing countries: maybe for testing HIV, maybe for testing for tuberculosis, or perhaps even malaria."

Researchers at the University of Toronto in Canada are studying a mobile phone system that may help people with diabetes control their blood pressure.

The system collects blood pressure readings from home testing devices that have wireless technology. The readings are then sent to a health-care monitoring system.

Patients receive a mobile phone message telling them how they are doing. If their blood pressure is too high, they are advised to make an appointment with their doctor. Several high readings will cause the system to automatically contact the doctor.

Patients in the study used the mobile phone system for one year. The researchers found that thirty-seven percent of the patients were able to get their blood pressure under control. This compares with about fourteen percent of patients using common equipment.

Originally Posted: Top Diagnosis