Dark chocolate ‘may lower blood pressure’

There may be good news for people looking for an excuse to munch on a couple of squares of chocolate after a review showed the treat could reduce blood pressure. An analysis of 20 studies showed that eating dark chocolate daily resulted in a slight reduction in blood pressure. The Cochrane Group’s report said chemicals…

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Masturbation: “An Evolutionary Magic Trick”

In the climactic scene of Woody Allen’s clever and self-consciously juvenile film Everything You Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Ask, Allen’s character is a sperm cell who is waiting for his big moment. Allen’s character is not happy with his assigned fate. Nor does he get to decide when his moment…

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Red = Don’t Eat: Simple Food Labels and the Effective Illusion of Control

From New York City’s point of view, humans are notoriously bad at making good decisions. That’s what makes a ban on large sodas necessary: the idea that Americans can’t be trusted with their own health. But maybe there’s a middle ground between letting people gorge themselves on junk food and making it illegal. The key…

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Malta is ‘safest place on earth’

If you want to avoid becoming a victim of a natural disaster or of climate change, you could do no better than to live in Malta or Qatar, according to a new United Nations study which says these two small countries are the safest in the world. The World Risk Report for 2011, conducted by…

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Genetically Modified Food May Be Why You’re Fat!

The jury is still out on whether genetically modified food is dangerous–though the genetic engineers discussed in this post make a pretty compelling case for its shortcomings. A new study suggests that even if GM food isn’t directly making us sick, it might be causing us to gain weight. Which then makes you sick. So,…

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Marijuana Reveals Memory Mechanism

Until recently, most scientists believed that neurons were the all-important brain cells controlling mental functions and that the surrounding glial cells were little more than neuron supporters and “glue.” Now research published in March in Cell reveals that astrocytes, a type of glia, have a principal role in working memory. And the scientists made the…

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Workout Gadgets Will Soon Be Battery-Free and Powered by You

Lightweight, wearable gadgets have changed our workout routines. Some of us consider it an integral part of every workout to monitor our heart rates, activity and calories burned in real time. Future devices may become even more enmeshed in our fitness routines. Enter battery-free gadgets powered by body heat. If you run hard, bike for…

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Scientists Develop Nicotine Vaccine to Curb Addiction

Researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College have developed and successfully tested in mice an innovative vaccine to treat nicotine addiction. In the journal Science Translational Medicine, the scientists describe how a single dose of their novel vaccine protects mice, over their lifetime, against nicotine addiction. The vaccine is designed to use the animal’s liver as…

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Genetically Modified Food That Prevents Cancer, Makes You Healthier

There is a lot of reasonable debate about the safety of changing the genetic makeup of things we eat, but scientists are doing amazing things with GM food–everything from cancer-preventing tomatoes to cabbages that produce their own pesticides. Genetically Modified Food That Prevents Cancer, Makes You Healthier | Co.Exist: World changing ideas and innovation.

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