Want to be the Life of the Party? – Scientists are using MDMA for social anxiety

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Scientists are testing whether MDMA, the active ingredient in Ecstasy, may help treat social anxiety in adults with autism.

Los Angeles researchers want to see if MDMA, a “heart-opening” drug, reduces the fear of interacting with people in the first study to look at MDMA and autistic people, co-investigator Alicia Danforth said.

MDMA has been shown to boost confidence, heighten bonding and increase understanding of social cues, all qualities that could ease social anxiety, researchers said.

Scientists are not trying to “cure” autism but instead find data about MDMA’s effect on social anxiety, she said.

The study is imperative because few treatment options exist for the condition in adults with autism, who are at a higher risk of having it, said the researchers from the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

The MDMA used in the study is safer than Ecstasy and Molly because it is pure, Danforth said. The street drugs are usually contaminated, with only 20% of Ecstasy pills even containing MDMA in some samples, and can be harmful, she said.

What are your thoughts? Would you take a drug to easy your social anxiety?

Credit: Daily News

Do you live on a noisy neighborhood? – It might be causing to be Fatter

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Exposure to noise from traffic, trains and planes may be linked to a burgeoning belly, Swedish researchers report.

The increased risk of a larger waist rose with the number of sources of noise someone was exposed to at the same time — from 25 percent for those exposed to only one source to nearly double for those exposed to all three sources, the scientists added.

“Long-term exposure to traffic noise may affect our metabolism and lead to abdominal obesity,” said lead researcher Charlotta Eriksson, from the Institute Environmental Medicine at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm.

“Traffic noise should be recognized as an important environmental health hazard that needs to be taken into consideration in urban planning,” she said.

Eriksson cautioned that this is an observational study, so no definitive conclusions can be drawn about cause and effect between traffic noise and abdominal obesity.

Traffic noise, however, may be even more harmful to health than was previously known, Eriksson said. Earlier research has shown associations between traffic noise and high blood pressure and heart attacks, she noted.

Do you live on a noisy neighborhood? Is it making you fatter?

Credit: Health Day

Wisdom Wednesdays – Time is not on your side

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The Truth Hurts – We’re all scared

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Happy Cherry Dessert Day!!! – Health Benefits of Cherries (What is your favorite Cherry Dessert?)

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Health Benefits of Cherries

  1. Protection from Diabetes

Sweet cherries have a lower glycemic index of 22, lower than apricots (57), grapes (46), peaches (42), blueberries (40) or plums (39). This makes them a better choice of a fruit snack compared with many other fruits, especially for diabetics.

  1. Helps You Sleep Better

Tossing and turning at night?  Cherry juice to the rescue! Drink cherry juice 30 minutes after waking and 30 minutes before your evening meal. In a study, participants boosted their melatonin intake by following this routine. Cherries are a good source of melatonin.They have also been found to help with jet lag.

Note: there is a higher level of melatonin in tart cherries compared to sweet cherries.

  1. Decreases Belly Fat

Tart cherries reduced belly fat in a study. Researchers found rats that were fed whole tart cherry powder, in a high fat diet, didn’t gain as much weight or build up as much body fat as rats that didn’t.

  1. Helps Ward of Alzheimer’s

The Alzheimer’s Association includes cherries as one of the memory boosting foods because they are rich in antioxidants.

  1. Reduces Risk of Stroke

Tart cherries provide cardiovascular benefits. The anthocyanins, which are the pigments giving  tart cherries its red color, may activate PPAR which regulates genes involved in fat and glucose metabolism and thus, reduce risk factors for high cholesterol, blood pressure and diabetes. – Research University of Michigan Health System.

  1. Slows the Aging of Skin

Cherries have the highest antioxidant level of any fruit. Antioxidants help the body fight the free radicals that make us look old. Drinking one glass of tart cherry juice daily slows down the aging process, according to Scientists from the Michigan State University. Cherry juice is also recommended as an alternative treatment for other skin conditions.

  1. Lowers Risk of Gout Attacks

Eating cherries lowers risk of gout attacks by 35 percent in a study with 633 gout patients, done by by Yuqing Zhang, professor of medicine and public health at Boston University. Gout patients who consumed cherries over a two-day period had a 35 percent lower risk of gout attacks, compared to those who did not eat the cherries. “Our findings indicate that consuming cherries or cherry extract lowers the risk of gout attack, the gout flare risk continued to decrease with increasing cherry consumption, up to three servings over two days.” said Zhang.

  1. Reduces Muscle Pain

A cup and a half of tart cherries or one cup of tart cherry juice can reduce muscle inflammation and soreness studies suggest. A group of marathon runners drank tart cherry juice twice daily for seven days before their race. The group who drank the cherry juice group experienced less muscle pain after the race than those who drank another fruit drink.

  1. Good for the Heart

Cherries are very high in potassium, which helps regulate heart rate and blood pressure and reduces the risk of hypertension. The phytosterols in cherries help reduce bad cholesterol levels.

  1. Helps with osteoarthritis relief

The pain and discomfort of swollen joints were reduced when tart cherry juice was consumed twice a day for three weeks in a study of twenty women ages 40 to 70 with inflammatory osteoarthritis.

Credit: Care 2

Photo Credit: CD Kitchen

Motivation Monday – Marine Staff Sgt. Liam Dwyer’s Drive for Life (Happy Memorial Day!!!)

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SC Featured – Liam Dwyer: Drive
.Despite losing a leg in Afghanistan, Marine Staff Sgt. Liam Dwyer has kept alive his passion for racing – and winning!!!

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Happy National Wine Day!!! – What is your favorite Reds or White wines? – Gives us your recommendations

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National Wine Day is celebrated annually on May 25.  Each year, on this day, people enjoy a glass of their favorite wine with dinner, for dessert, with friends, at a restaurant, at home or at a wine-tasting event.


Wine is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented grapes or other fruits. The natural chemical balance of grapes lets them ferment without the addition of sugars, acids, enzymes, water, or other nutrients.  Yeast consumes the sugars in the grapes and converts them into alcohol. Different varieties of grapes and strains of yeasts produce different types of wine. The well-known variations result from the very complex interactions between the biochemical development of the fruit, reactions involved in fermentation, and human intervention in the overall process. The final product may contain tens of thousands of chemical compounds in amounts varying from a few percent to a few parts per billion.

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Wines made from fruits besides grapes are usually named after the fruit from which they are produced (for example, pomegranate  wine, apple wine and elderberry wine) and are generically called fruit wine. The term “wine” can also refer to starch-fermented or fortified beverages having higher alcohol content, such as barley wine or sake.” (Wikipedia)

  • In 1867, Archaeologists in Speyer, Germany discovered the oldest bottle of wine in existence while they were excavating two Roman stone sarcophaguses.  It dates back to at least 325 AD.  The bottle of wine is now on display at the History Museum of the Pfalz in Germany.

Credit: National Day Calender

Photo Credit: The Times

Sideways – The Life Of Wine

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Poetry & Art – Regrets & Gone Girl by Ryan Fu

Regrets

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Gone Girl

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RYAN FU

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