Monday, March 05, 2007

Speedlinking 3/5/07

Quote of the day:

"I have too much respect for the idea of God to make it responsible for such an absurd world."
~ Georges Duhamel

Image of the day:


~ 100 Calories of Heaven -- "Get a diet-friendly portion of your favorite chocolate."
~ Simple Solutions To Postpartum Weight Retention -- "Women aiming to shed after pregnancy pounds should add daily walks and limit TV time and trans fats, according to a new study by Harvard researchers." Or you could not gain 50 pounds in the first place. My experience suggests that 25-30 pounds is the optimal weight gain, and most of that comes in the third trimester, when daily calories should be increased by about 300 over pre-pregnancy levels.
~ Natural Milk Protein Could Lead To Super Nutritious Foods -- "Technion-Israel institute of Technology researchers have engineered a way to deliver health-promoting nutrients using protein particles naturally present in milk as carriers. The breakthrough could lead to low fat or non-fat foods that contain nutrients now present only in fat-containing foods, and could be used to enrich foods with other important nutraceuticals like vitamins and antioxidants."
~ Hips Don't Lie: 10 Food Fibs that Make You Fat -- "Find out what could be holding you back from losing weight."
~ New Science-Based Guide To Natural Fat-Loss -- "American consumers have long been skeptical about weight-loss supplements, and rightly so. With dozens of nutrients, herbs, and food extracts being marketed as aids for weight loss, there is shockingly little reliable information available concerning the safety and efficacy of any given product."
~ Does cycling cause impotence? -- "The greatest source of discomfort for cyclists is the nose of their bike seat pressing on nerves and soft tissues. For men, this pain brings the additional worry of impotence."
~ Enabling Nerve Regeneration Means Evicting The Cleanup Crew -- "Macrophages are the immune cells that engulf and destroy the debris of damaged tissue to enable the healing process to begin. Their presence at the scene of damage is critical, but once their task is complete, it is just as critical that macrophages exit rapidly, ending the inflammatory process and making way for regrowth."
~ Falls And Hip Fractures Are Not Inevitable: A Return To Nature -- "Falls account for 70 percent of accidental deaths in persons 75 years of age and older. For many, this becomes the beginning of the end. But in a new study, researchers highlight the exercises and techniques needed to reverse this trend. Falls and hip fractures don't have to be inevitable, the researchers said."
~ Bernadine Healy, M.D.: A Closer Look at the Vitamin Study -- "The researchers concluded that people taking the antioxidants vitamins A, its precursor beta carotene, and vitamin E, for whatever reason, at whatever dose, and for however long, may be putting their lives in jeopardy. But before you toss out your vitamin pills, let's examine this alarmist study a little bit closer."

~ Why Robots Love Music (Part 1) and Why Robots Love Music (Part 2) from Deepak Chopra. A look at how neuroscience fails in the understanding of human creativity, especially in the area of music.
~ Birth Weight, Gestation Period May Be Linked To Depression, Chronic Pain -- "According to a review in Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, evidence is mounting that lifelong stress-related conditions such as depression and chronic pain may be linked to fetal growth and timing of delivery."
~ Revealing The Machinery Underlying The 'Plastic' Juvenile Brain -- "Among the central mysteries of neurobiology is what properties of the young brain enable it to so adeptly wire itself to adapt to experience - a quality known as plasticity. The extraordinary plasticity of the young brain occurs only during a narrow window of time known as the critical period."
~ New Insight Into Brain Disorders -- "The function of an enzyme in the brain - strongly linked to a number of major brain diseases such as Alzheimer's, schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder - has been identified for the first time by researchers at the University of Bristol, UK. These findings, published in Neuron, will help in the understanding of how memories are laid down and what goes wrong in these disorders."
~ National Survey Of Health Plans Shows Very Few Provide Online Counseling -- "A national survey of commercial health plans has found that most plans provide online information regarding mental health and substance abuse but few provide clinical services such as counseling via the Internet."
~ Addiction Breakthrough May Lead To New Treatments -- "Scientists at the University of Cambridge have discovered why some individuals may be predisposed to drug addiction and believe it may lead to better treatments for this brain disorder.The new findings, published in Science, may lead to more targeted treatments for addiction and other compulsive behaviour disorders with fewer side effects than current alternatives.Certain changes in brain chemistry have been linked with drug addiction in humans."
~ Personality or Situation? The Psychology of Individual Differences -- "So far in this series on the top ten psychology studies, the research has lumped us all together in one group and asked what psychological research says about all of us. The studies have asked questions about how people's emotions, memories and perceptions work. What they haven't asked is what can psychologists tell us about the systematic differences between people?"
~ Signs of Posttraumatic Stress -- "Once called shell shock, PTSD now includes rape and assault victims. Symptoms are varied; treatment includes psychotherapy, support groups, and medication."
~ 5 Positive Psychology Exercises -- "Try these five exercises arising out of positive psychology studies. Research indicates each can bring greater levels of life happiness." I'm not a big fan of Positive Psychology overall, but the exercises are useful within an integral framework.

~ FDA drops plan for prescription drug watch list -- "Health officials said on Friday they had dropped plans to keep a public list of prescription drugs with emerging safety concerns, one of the measures proposed after Merck & Co.'s 2004 withdrawal of its arthritis drug Vioxx." But they are more than willing to watch herbal and nutritional supplements with a lot less likelihood to cause harm.
~ Objectivity, religion and the schools: yeah, right [Dr. Joan Bushwell's Chimpanzee Refuge] -- "P.Z Myers has unearthed a story that would, I'm sure, become a daily occurrence all over the country were comparative religion -- currently a requirement for kids in the United Kingdom, I believe -- taught routinely in American public schools. It would be seen as nothing more than a state-sponsored attempt to undermine the faith of Christian kids, and would, I am certain, lead to people withdrawing their kids en masse and placing them in Christian schools." See also: Why comparative religion classes will never work in American public schools [Pharyngula].
~ The Kucinich Conundrum -- "Why does a 60-year-old vegan former mayor of Cleveland keep running for President? Maybe because he thinks he's right."
~ The Republican candidates -- and Ann Coulter -- try out their acts -- "At the Conservative Political Action Conference, Giuliani flops and Romney shines as the GOP presidential contenders promise the right-wing faithful everything, including a cure for cancer."
~ Confrontational investigations, subpoenas, and hearings are the priority -- "Efforts to impose legislative limits on the Bush administration's abuses will be futile until aggressive and dramatic light is shined on their behavior."
~ The Tradeoffs of Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell -- "Since 2003, the number of convicted felons allowed to join has nearly doubled -- to 1,605 last year. The military has also welcomed nearly 44,000 enlistees convicted of serious misdemeanors. Going from an orange jumpsuit to desert camo must be a refreshing change. But the Pentagon hasn't eliminated its standards entirely. You still can't serve your country if you have a thing for people of your own sex."
~ Extend Legal Rights to Guantanamo -- "For more than 200 years, the courts have served as the ultimate safeguard for our civil liberties. A critical part of this role has been the judicial branch's ability to consider writs of habeas corpus, through which people who have been imprisoned can challenge the decision to hold them."
~ Arthur Schlesinger, R.I.P. -- "I always regretted that we didn't become friends, because the thousands who succeeded in doing so found friendship with Arthur Schlesinger very rewarding. For one thing, to behold him -- listen to him, observe him, read him -- was to co-exist with a miracle of sorts."
~ Giuliani Edges Out McCain in Perceptions of Viability for Presidency -- "Of the leading Republican candidates in the 2008 presidential race, Rudy Giuliani and John McCain have huge advantages over Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Sam Brownback in public perceptions of each one's chances of being elected president. But comparing Giuliani and McCain, Republicans see Giuliani as the more viable candidate for their party."

~ Busy Intersections Invite People To Walk More -- "People are more likely to go for a walk in areas with four-way intersections and a large number of shops and businesses as possible destinations, a large new study finds. The study examined pedestrian trips in 10 major U.S. cities to determine to what extent urban design guidelines increase walking."
~ Damp homes 'could cause asthma' -- "Damp and mould-infested houses could be the cause of permanent asthma in children, say researchers. Poor housing conditions are already linked to the illness but there is debate whether they cause asthma, or simply trigger attacks."
~ Hansen Offers Options for Addressing Global Warming -- "Speaking at the American University in Washington, D.C. on Monday, renowned U.S. climate scientist James Hansen offered a series of recommendations to stave off the most dangerous effects of climate change."
~ Power Down! Simple Ways to Reduce Energy Consumption -- "Recently, at Ignite Seattle!, a bi-monthly event for geeks and makers, Avi Geiger, a hardware architect, gave a talk on power consumption that reminded me to 'turn it off'."
~ High temperatures leave five million Chinese short of water -- "Nearly five million Chinese are unable to get enough drinking water because of a series of droughts caused by "abnormally high" temperatures, state media said Sunday."
~ Stargazers Watch Total Lunar Eclipse -- "The moon darkened, reddened, and turned shades of gray and orange Saturday night during the first total lunar eclipse in nearly three years, thrilling stargazers and astronomers around the world."
~ Physicists reveal water's secrets -- "It's essential to all life, and numerous research papers are published about it every year. Yet there are still secrets to reveal about water, that seemingly simple compound we know as H2 O."
~ A Prediction from String Theory, with Strings Attached -- "For decades researchers have tried to wrest testable predictions from string theory, the leading candidate for a more fundamental understanding of the universe. Now physicists say they have used one of the most sophisticated pieces of string theory to predict properties of the ultradense matter created in an atom smasher in Long Island, N.Y."

~ Getting The Love You Want: Hendrix and More on IMAGO - Getting The Love You Want from Gary at Integral in Seattle.
~ Meaningful Enlightenment II from CJ Smith at Indistinct Union.
~ From the Tricycle Blog (Lin Jensen), Public Ethics.
~ Refined Carbohydrates As Environmental Toxin -- An integral look at the evil of refined carbs from Katherine at Dating God.
~ ARRAYS OF LIGHT: Ken Wilber's Tables of Correspondence - Hugh Martin over at Integral World.
~ Also at Integral World, Dispelling the Myths: Second Reply to Ray Harris - Jeff Meyerhoff.
~ Integral Institute: forever unclear on the concept, an interesting discussion of the issues in I-I forums, and the general lack of member care at I-I.
~ Ego + Desire x Kabbalah = Purpose from TikkunGer.

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