Category Archives: Scientific Studies

Good News About HIV

hiv

You don’t hear much about the HIV epidemic any more, despite the fact that an estimated 1.2 million Americans are living with the disease, and an estimated 44,000 new cases are reported in this country every year.  The Center for Disease Control says that 36.7 million people around the world have the disease, and 1.1 million died from AIDS-related causes last year.

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Will Your Morning Cup of Coffee Make You Healthier?

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If you drink coffee habitually, you’ll like this.  A new study monitored the coffee intake of 208,500 men and women over the course of 30 years, and found that people who drink coffee in moderation (fewer than five cups a day) received a number of significant health benefits.  Among them: lower risk of dying from heart diseases, diabetes, certain brain conditions—and, oddly enough, suicide.

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Bees an endangered species?

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You probably know that the bee population in the U.S. has been collapsing for the past several years, due to factors that are only now being partially understood.  Scientists call the phenomenon “colony collapse disorder,” but the term “beemageddon” has become popular among laypersons.

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Communicable Stress

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By all accounts, stress—and its accompanying emotional mix of frustration, anxiety and fear—is bad for your health.  When you experience stress in your body, you release increased amounts of glucose from our liver into your blood, and your body produces cortisone, which is actually toxic to your system.  Your heart rate goes up, sending more enriched blood to your muscles.  Your immune system kicks into high gear, and you stay in this high-alert state which is only designed to help you combat real threats, depleting you physically.

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The World’s Worst Drivers

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Just over 35,000 Americans were killed in automobile crashes in 2015, a 7% increase over the previous year, which represented the largest annual increase since 1965.  Does that mean Americans are less safe, or more safe, than drivers in other parts of the developed world?

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Does Wealth Equate to Quality of Life?

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If you want to see a fascinating chart, take a look at this graphic which charts each country’s GDP per capita with its “social progress,” defined by a cumulative measure of economic opportunity, access to quality healthcare and education, tolerance of minorities and general quality of life.  This is a subjective measure, but if you look at the countries toward the bottom of the chart, you’ll see that the Social Progress Index mostly gets it right.

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The Awareness of Plants

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Do plants respond to your touch?  Do they feel or enjoy music or your singing voice?

The answers, according to new research conducted at the University of Western Australia, are yes and no.  Lead researcher Olivier Van Aken says that plants rapidly respond when you pinch a flower, step on them or just brush by them while walking.

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