Humans news stories

Your brain fills gaps in your hearing without you realising
15th March 2017 | newscientist.com | Humans

Noise is everywhere, but that’s OK. Your brain can still keep track of a conversation in the face of revving motorcycles, noisy cocktail parties or screaming children – in part by predicting what’s coming next and filling in any blanks.

New data suggests that these insertions are processed as if the brain had really heard the parts of the word that are missing.

New Study Suggests Our Understanding of Brain Cells Is Flawed, and Here’s Why
15th March 2017 | sciencealert.com | Humans

A new study has found evidence that a section of our neurons, called the dendrites, aren’t the passive receivers we’ve always assumed them to be.

Decriminalize all drugs, business and world leaders tell UN
11th March 2017 | theguardian.com | Humans, Misc.

A British billionaire, three former presidents and a renowned Aids researcher have called for all drugs to be decriminalized at a press conference that was sharply critical of the United Nations’ latest drug policy agreement, adopted this week.

Israel Officially Decriminalizes Marijuana Use
11th March 2017 | haaretz.com | Humans, Misc.

The cabinet approved on Sunday the decriminalized use of marijuana in Israel.

First-time offenders will face $270 fine if caught using marijuana in a public place, but criminal charges will only be brought if person re-offends four times.

Surprising Reason More Sex May Be Key To Happiness: Cuddling And Affection Increase Couples’ Wellbeing
11th March 2017 | medicaldaily.com | Humans

Researchers have long known that people who have more sex are generally happier than the those who get lucky less often, but the chicken and egg question remained: Does sex actually make you happier, or do happier people just have more sex? According to a new study, sex really does make you happier, but it was the time spent cuddling after sex, and not the joy of orgasm, that made people happy.

Brain Activity At The Moment of Death
11th March 2017 blogs.discovermagazine.com | Humans

For three of the four patients, EEG activity ceased before the heart stopped beating – up to 10 minutes before, in the case of patient #2. However, patient #4 showed a slightly different pattern, with electrical activity (delta wave bursts) occuring up to 10 minutes after the final heartbeat.

Vaccines linked to mental disorders by Yale study
9th March 2017 yaledailynews.com | Humans

A recent Yale study has called into question the safety of vaccines and could lend fuel to anti-vaccine advocates

The study, published last month in the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry, reports that patients diagnosed with neuropsychiatric disorders like obsessive-compulsive disorder and anorexia nervosa were more likely to have received vaccinations three months prior to their diagnoses.

Psychologists say your moral outrage is simply self-serving: Expressing your anger at a third party ‘makes you feel less guilty about injustices in the world’
9th March 2017 | dailymail.co.uk | Humans

We may think getting mad about injustices in the world shows how selfless we are.

But a new study claims it’s just the opposite – it showcases our self-serving nature.

Teach yourself everyday happiness with imagery training
9th March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Humans

Researchers have found that self-guided positive imagery training can successfully combat negative emotions in our daily lives. This tool is so powerful that it also changes the way our brain functions.


Related: Why Mind Wandering Can Be So Miserable, According to Happiness Experts

Can green LED light ease your chronic pain?
9th March 2017 | futurity.org | Humans, Tech

It wasn’t the first time that Mohab Ibrahim’s brother, Wael, had called complaining of a headache. Ibrahim suggested that he take some ibuprofen.

Wael declined his brother’s advice. “No, I’m going to go and sit among the trees, and that will make me feel better,” he said.

Air pollution can alter the effectiveness of antibiotics and increases the potential of disease, new study reveals
7th March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Animal Life, Earth, Humans

New research has explored the impact of black carbon on bacteria in the respiratory tract. The study specifically looked into how air pollution affects the bacteria living in our bodies, specifically the respiratory tract — the nose, throat and lungs.


Related: Turning the water on in a sink can launch pipe-climbing superbugs

Probiotic combo may ease your spring sneezing
7th March 2017 | futurity.org | Humans

A new probiotic combination taken during allergy season may help reduce hay fever symptoms.

Many published studies have shown a probiotic’s ability to regulate the body’s immune response to allergies, but not all of the probiotics show a benefit.

Intestinal bacteria alter gut and brain function, study shows
7th March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Humans

The goal of a new study was to explore whether fecal microbiota from human IBS patients with diarrhea has the ability to influence gut and brain function in recipient mice. Using fecal transplants, researchers transferred microbiota from IBS patients with or without anxiety into germ-free mice.

Are market bubbles caused by traders’ testosterone levels?
7th March 2017 phys.org | Humans

Research conducted at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) has determined that psychological momentum significantly affects performance among men but not among women, which may account for exaggerated risk-taking in financial and business endeavors among males.

This Is Your Brain on Poverty
7th March 2017 blogs.scientificamerican.com | Humans

A couple of weeks ago I listened to an excellent podcast series on poverty in America. One message that stuck with me is just how many factors the poor have working against them—factors that, if you’re not poor, are all too easy to deny, disregard, or simply fail to notice.

Horse-riding can improve children’s cognitive ability
7th March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Animal Life, Humans

Recent research shows that the effects of vibrations produced by horses during horse-riding lead to the activation of the sympathetic nervous system, which improves learning in children.

Watching birds near your home is good for your mental health
6th March 2017 | exeter.ac.uk | Humans

People living in neighbourhoods with more birds, shrubs and trees are less likely to suffer from depression, anxiety and stress, according to research by academics at the University of Exeter, the British Trust for Ornithology and the University of Queensland.

News stories covering humans, psychology and health.