The mental side of physical exercise: Nick Goolab tackling self doubt head on

British international tells Euan Crumley about why he had to take a break from athletics and how a change in mindset has been crucial to rediscovering his love of the sport. Nick Goolab was no longer enjoying his running. Even though he won the Ipswich 5k in May, he spent the entire race inwardly berating and criticising himself. The Belgrave Harrier knew his mindset was not doing him any favours at all and that something had to change. He took a two-month break from the sport and during that time began to work with Wendy Hilton, a life coach who is also a masseuse with British Athletics. ...

Read More

Why children are ready to shift toward more independence around age 4

My earliest clear memories of events I experienced, which are not simply memories of stories told to me about my childhood, are from when I was 4 years old. I know, because those memories are clearly situated at and near the apartment in Minneapolis where we lived when I was 4, from which we moved about the time I turned 5. One of those memories, which would have occurred when I was about 4 years and 4 months, is the following. On a hot summer day, my grandmother told me that it was time for me to take an adventure by myself. We lived on a busy street with traffic lights, and I'm sure that my grandmother had already explained to me how to cross streets at lights as we took walks together. But this day, she told me, I...

Read More

Former vegan converts to carnivore diet after spider bite-bourne infection

An ex-vegan who suffered an infection after being bitten by a spider now ONLY eats meat. Sylwia Tabor from Sacramento, California, was out camping in July 2017 when she was bitten on the ankle, which caused her to come out in small pimples on her body and her flesh began to rot away. She said: "I didn't think much of it at first. It was only a small bite on my ankle. "But in late August, I developed this pimple in my groin area, which over the next days grew and grew until it was about the size of my hand." ...

Read More

The scents of heaven: Frankincense and myrrh

Frankincense and myrrh have long links to the sacred. Why has Christianity viewed them with both fascination and suspicion? In the traditional Christmas narrative, wise men from the East brought gifts of frankincense, myrrh and gold for the infant Christ. Many explanations exist for the choice of these three items. Most centre on the idea that frankincense was for the birth of a divinity, myrrh was for his embalmment after death, and gold was a recognition of his status as king. I find the plant extracts - frankincense and myrrh - to be particularly interesting. How is it that they existed as both medicinal and ritual substances, and endured as such despite the profound shifts in culture and science over the ensuing centuries? What is it about frankincense and myrrh that caught the imagination of early Christians, and how have...

Read More

BEST OF THE WEB: ‘Bad advice’: Group of doctors in Canada lobby to change Food Guide, calling for more meat and fat in diet and less carbs and sugar

Allen Bradshaw, a pathologist from Abbotsford, B.C., is part of a group of doctors from across the country who have been on a crusade to change the way Canadians are told to eat. For the past two years, she and her colleague Dr. Carol Loffelmann, an anesthesiologist in Toronto, have spent much of their free time travelling the country, urging colleagues and regular Canadians alike to eat fewer carbohydrates than what's recommended by the government and indulge in fat from sources such as steak and cheese - even if that flies in the face of conventional wisdom. It's all they can do as they wait to see whether Health Canada will heed the message from their grassroots campaign. Since 2016, the women, who founded Canadian Clinicians for Therapeutic Nutrition, a national non-profit, have lobbied the government, with letters, an Ottawa...

Read More

Plant hallucinogen Ayahuasca shows promise for diabetes treatment

For centuries, some indigenous groups in South America have relied on a brew made from the parts of a local vine and a shrub. The effects of this drink, called ayahuasca, would begin with severe vomiting and diarrhea, but the real reason for drinking the tea was the hallucinating that followed. These visions were thought to uncover the secrets of the drinker's poor health and point the way to a cure. Modern techniques have revealed that one of the compounds underlying these mystic experiences is the psychoactive drug harmine. What these first users of ayahuasca couldn't have known was that, one day, this ingredient in their enlightening brew would be positioned as a key to treating diabetes. Such a cure is a long way off, but researchers took another step toward it when they combined naturally occurring harmine with a...

Read More

Only the tip of the iceberg: How toxins cause disease

Although the word toxin sounds scary, most people don't grasp precisely how toxins interact with human physiology and how long this has been a problem for humans. Doctors noticed almost two hundred years ago that toxins like mercury were causing "mad hatter disease." It was also known that toxicity from leaded water pipes was a major cause of the decline of the Roman Empire. But in the past, these toxins were largely limited to occupational exposure. Only people who performed certain specific tasks- coal miners, who inhale coal dust, for example-were known to be casualties. Doctors didn't consider the rest of the population to be at risk. But with the explosion of industrial activity and products, that has changed. Following more research, scientists and perceptive clinicians now better understand that toxicity affects most-if not all-of the population. The more research...

Read More

Clean your room! The problem with completing household chores in a timely manner

Chores are the worst. I'm trying to construct an alternative theory of myself in which I'm a tidy person. It's not going well. Walking my recycling from my apartment to the trash room down the hall takes me anywhere from two minutes to a month. I hate looking at broken-down boxes and empty LaCroix cans in my apartment, but studies say humans are bad at prioritizing long-term goals over instant gratification, and I apparently find doing anything else much more gratifying. It doesn't take a scientist to explain why I might put off other things, such as doing my dishes. Those are annoying and kind of gross, and the primary reward is just being able to use them in the future. Still, at a certain point, the anxiety of not having done these tasks surpasses the annoyance of doing them...

Read More

Information overload: Attention is not a resource but a way of being alive to the world

We are drowning in information, while starving for wisdom.' Those were the words of the American biologist E O Wilson at the turn of the century. Fast forward to the smartphone era, and it's easy to believe that our mental lives are now more fragmentary and scattered than ever. The 'attention economy' is a phrase that's often used to make sense of what's going on: it puts our attention as a limited resource at the center of the informational ecosystem, with our various alerts and notifications locked in a constant battle to capture it. That's a helpful narrative in a world of information overload, and one in which our devices and apps are intentionally designed to get us hooked. Moreover, besides our own mental wellbeing, the attention economy offers a way of looking at some important social problems: from the...

Read More

Multimillion $ industry: Colonoscopy found to be far more ‘dangerous and potentially deadly’ than previously thought

The procedure known as colonoscopies as a prophylactic for colon cancer is a multimillion dollar industry. Every year, over 14 million perfectly healthy individuals age 50 and up, submit themselves to this invasive procedure hoping to detect colorectal cancer. But is it really effective? It's a Painful and Dangerous Procedure It's actually far more dangerous-and potentially deadly-than they'd like to admit. According The Annals Of Internal Medicine's report on colonoscopies, an estimated 70,000 (0.5%) will be injured or killed by a complication related to this procedure. This figure is 22% higher than the annual deaths from colorectal cancer itself - the very disease the device was designed to prevent. According to the Telemark Polyp Study I, colonoscopies actually increase mortality by 57% . For every person saved by a colonoscopy, 56 people suffer serious injury. A person can live for...

Read More