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(Anti-)Social Media: How Social Networks Affect Our Neural Networks

We like to think we are fairly rational and sensible beings, unable to be puppeteered by the internet, but neuroscientists are quickly unveiling how social media networks significantly affect our neural networks and motivate certain behaviors. One candidate in particular understood how to use this hook to his advantage, and built a campaign on rage instead of reason — garnering millions of supporters along the way. You might not have seen it coming, but the science of social media did. [ … ]

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The Inward Eye: Imitating the Brain

Some time ago, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Dr. Daniel Amen — author, brain-disorder specialist, and psychiatrist who founded Amen Clinics — who reminded me that the brain is perhaps the only organ that specialists almost never have physical contact with, let alone that they see. “Psychiatrists are really the only practitioners who never look at the organ they treat,” he told me, “and because of that, they hurt people.” [ … ]

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Finding Yourself: Body Schemas and More

Somewhere in our heads, a constant mental narrative tells us where we are, if we’re upside down, where our physical self stops and where the surrounding world begins. Body awareness, also called the body schema or corporeal awareness, is essential for a host of functions that don’t get much attention [ … ]

aging

The Importance of Novelty

Novelty, by definition, is anything that is new to us, and the experience of novelty can take many forms: meeting a new friend, learning a new skill, buying a new outfit, listening to new music, or traveling to a new environment. Most mammals, especially humans, naturally prefer novelty, so long as it does not come with some perceived threat. [ … ]

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Making A Yoga Business Financially Healthy

For many Americans, yoga is no longer just an escape from the material world. In fact, the opposite seems to be true. Yoga has become a powerful part of fitness, social, and spiritual culture. And perhaps more tellingly, it is now one of the fastest growing industries in American business. As the yoga industry continues to thrive, it faces a new dilemma [ … ]

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Alternative Medicine: Does It Do the Trick?

Conventional medicine can do amazing things, but despite recent changes in health care, medical treatments can still be expensive, and the side effects of many invasive treatments can be detrimental. It is small wonder then that many people are turning to alternative treatments in hopes of finding a cure. [ … ]

aging

It’s All In Your Head? Controlling Pain Through the Mind-Body Connection

Calming a frantic person, whether he or she is dealing with worries, sadness or even chronic pain, is a pretty tall order. About one in three Americans — more than 116 million people — lives with long-lasting pain that never seems to go away. Here’s the thing: When pain becomes persistent, even after a person’s underlying problem has been treated or the catalytic injury has healed, it is considered chronic. [ … ]