Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Research: Why pillow talk matters

Chatting immediately after sex makes couples feel closer and more secure, claims scientist
Chatting immediately after sex makes couples feel closer and more secure, claims scientist

- Researcher at the University of Connecticut, examined link between amount of oxytocin in a person's body and communication after sex

- Men and women experience a post-climax oxytocin surge but testosterone is believed to dampen the effects so men typically fell less affectionate

- Professor Amanda Denes found women who orgasmed disclosed more intimate feelings to their partner after sex than women who did not orgasm

Many people feel more comfortable revealing their true feelings, hopes and stresses to a partner after sex and now one researcher thinks she knows why.
Amanda Denes believes pillow talk is an undervalued ingredient in a satisfying and enduring relationship and is linked to the production of the 'trust hormone' called oxytocin, which is released after orgasm.
She found that women who orgasmed disclosed more intimate feelings to their partner after sex than women who did not orgasm, which increased the emotional bond between couples.

The Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Connecticut, became interested in investigating the role of pillow talk in relationships as people have such different experiences of it.
Many people said they open up about their feelings to a partner after sex regardless of the length of a relationship – a time period described as the post-coital time interval (PCTI) by researchers Daniel Kruger and Susan Hughes.

When individuals experience orgasm, physiological changes occur as a hormone called oxytocin floods their bodies.
Increases in this ‘trust hormone’ have been linked to many socially beneficial behaviors.

Both men and women experience a post-climax oxytocin surge but testosterone is believed to dampen the effects so that men typically fell less warm and fuzzy after sex.

Professor Denes found that women who orgasmed disclosed more intimate feelings to their partner after sexual activity than women who did not orgasm.

Professor Denes believes that oxytocin is the reason why, as women who climax have more of the hormone in their systems, which increases feelings of trust and connection, than women who did not, influencing individuals’ decisions to talk about their feelings to their partners.

She explained that women may talk more about their feelings after sex than men as men’s higher levels of testosterone suppresses the oxytocin response.

Individuals in a committed relationship perhaps unsurprisingly disclosed more intimate feelings to their partners after sex than those in newer or more short-term relationships, Professor Denes said.
A previous study found that the afterglow of an orgasm minimises the risks and increases the benefits of disclosing personal information.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2528875/Why-pillow-talk-matters-Chatting-immediately-sex-makes-couples-feel-closer-secure-claims-scientist.html#ixzz2p6fApYq6 

University study reveals list of banned words in 2014

University study reveals list of banned words in 2014
University study reveals list of words from 2013 that should be banished with TWERK and SELFIE thankfully among them

A Michigan university has issued its annual list of annoying words, and those flexible enough to take selfies of themselves twerking should take note.

In addition to 'selfie' and 'twerking,' there was a strong sense among those who nominated words to this year's list that the word 'hashtag' and term 'Mr. Mom' had both run their course.

'Selfie,' a term that describes a self-taken photo, often from a smartphone, led the way among the more than 2,000 nominations submitted to Lake Superior State University's 39th annual batch of words to banish due to overuse, overreliance and overall fatigue. 

Even President Barack Obama got into the act this month when he took a well-publicized selfie with other world leaders in South Africa for Nelson Mandela's memorial service.

'It's a lame word. It's all about me, me, me,' wrote David Kriege of Lake Mills, Wis. 
'Put the smartphone away. Nobody cares about you.'

Since 1975, the list has grown to more than 800 words, many from the worlds of politics, sports and popular - maybe too popular - culture.
'The list is made up completely from nominations. We don't just sit around and think of words that bug us,' said Tom Pink, a spokesman for the school in Sault Ste. Marie, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

'Hashtag' refers to a word or phrase with no spaces preceded by the pound sign on the microblogging website Twitter.

Others on the banned list include 'Twittersphere,' 't-bone,' 'Obamacare' 'intellectually/morally bankrupt' and anything 'on steroids.'

People also tired of the suffixes '-pocalypse' and '-ageddon' used to make words such as 'snow-pocalypse' or 'ice-ageddon.'

And enough already with 'Mr. Mom,' a reference to fathers who take care of kids.

It's also the name of a 1983 movie starring Michael Keaton, although many stay-at-home dads these days don't like the movie stereotype of a clueless male.

'There were almost as many nominations for 'Mr. Mom' as 'selfie' and 'twerk,'' Pink said.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2531635/Michigan-University-releases-list-2013-words-banished-thankfully-TWERK-one-them.html#ixzz2p68FSHnt 

Crop Circle In California With YouTube Video Of Mysterious Green Lights, UFO?

Crop Circle In California With YouTube Video Of Mysterious Green Lights
An unexplained crop circle in Salinas, Calif., has captured the curiosity of alien enthusiasts and conspiracy theorists across the nation.

The patterns were noticed by aerial photographer Julie Belanger, who told ABC News she was shocked to discover them during a flyover on Monday.

Adding to the mystery is a  video posted on Youtube that shows two friends coming across the patterns after seeing green lights emanate from a field.

A representative from local Echelon Security Co. told the San Jose Mercury News he was hired to protect the land from rowdiness, but could not provide the identity of the landowner. A spokesperson for Echelon declined to provide further comment to ABC News.


Great display of friendship (video)

Monday, December 30, 2013

From NYC Cop: what "stop and frisk" policy really means

Early U.S. bank notes found in mint condition in a banker's drawer to sell for 1,700 times their face value

bank notes
In the late 1800s $3,500 was equivalent to about $80,000 in today's money.

Dustin Johnston, director of rare currency at Heritage Auctions, said: ‘This 1882 $500 gold certificate is one of the earliest gold certificates printed.

‘They were very strictly controlled and were printed in very low quantities so survivors are few and far between.

‘The only other one in the world is in the Smithsonian museum as part of the Federal Reserve collection.

bank notes
‘It is so historically valuable that I would say it is one of the top 10 greatest currency notes of all time.

‘Amazingly it has come from the estate of a deceased turn-of-the-century US banker along with three very scarce $1,000 notes.

‘It is very interesting that they were kept for that long. In 1933 when Franklin Roosevelt outlawed the possession of gold to combat the depression he also demonetized gold certificates. It was the first time the US had taken currency and made it worthless. 

bank notes
‘It had to have been a complete oversight of the banker that owned these notes to sit on them during the recession.

‘$3,500 was a tremendous amount money back - the average salary was about $2,500.
‘We can only guess the banker forgot about the notes because they were only discovered much later by the banker's family in a drawer.

‘It is an absolute trophy find. Maybe once in a generation a note of this magnitude shows up - and four turned up all at once.

bank notes
‘The odds of survival are so low we didn't ever expect to see these notes again - we thought they were gone for good.

‘These notes are so sought after they could well go beyond our estimates.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2531235/Early-U-S-bank-notes-mint-condition-bankers-drawer-sell-1-700-times-face-value.html#ixzz2ozGReIz7 

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Monday, December 23, 2013

Research: How rocks move when no one is watching

Research: How rocks move when no one is watching
At Racetrack Playa in the Death Valley National Park, California, strange forces are at work. Forces capable of pushing heavy rocks across the flat surface of a dried-out lake while no one is looking. 

Scientists have scratched their heads over the trails left by these sliding stones since early in the 20th Century. In the 1960s, Californian geologists started a rock monitoring programme. 

They tracked 30 stones, weighing up to 25kg, 28 of which moved during a seven-year period - some more than 200m. Analysis of the stones’ trails suggested speeds of 1m per second. In most cases, the stones travelled in winter. In the decades that followed, theories about ice and wind gained support. Others involved algal slime and seismic vibrations.

So what’s happening? Are the stones sliding around in bad weather? 'We think so,' says Dr Gunther Kletetschka, of the Academy of Science of the Czech Republic and Charles University in Prague, who led a 2013 study on the stones.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2528351/From-Costa-Ricas-great-balls-wandering-rocks-Death-Valley-The-10-natural-phenomenon-modern-science-explain.html#ixzz2oJW0lj00 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Vast Freshwater Reserves Found Beneath the Oceans

Vast Freshwater Reserves Found Beneath the Oceans
Scientists have discovered huge reserves of freshwater beneath the oceans kilometres out to sea, providing new opportunities to stave off a looming global water crisis.

A new study, published December 5 in the international scientific journal Nature, reveals that an estimated half a million cubic kilometres of low-salinity water are buried beneath the seabed on continental shelves around the world.

The water, which could perhaps be used to eke out supplies to the world's burgeoning coastal cities, has been located off Australia, China, North America and South Africa.

"The volume of this water resource is a hundred times greater than the amount we've extracted from the Earth's sub-surface in the past century since 1900," says lead author Dr Vincent Post (pictured) of the National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training (NCGRT) and the School of the Environment at Flinders University.

"Knowing about these reserves is great news because this volume of water could sustain some regions for decades."

Dr Post says that groundwater scientists knew of freshwater under the seafloor, but thought it only occurred under rare and special conditions.

"Our research shows that fresh and brackish aquifers below the seabed are actually quite a common phenomenon," he says.

These reserves were formed over the past hundreds of thousands of years when on average the sea level was much lower than it is today, and when the coastline was further out, Dr Post explains.
"So when it rained, the water would infiltrate into the ground and fill up the water table in areas that are nowadays under the sea.

"It happened all around the world, and when the sea level rose when ice caps started melting some 20,000 years ago, these areas were covered by the ocean.

"Many aquifers were -- and are still -- protected from seawater by layers of clay and sediment that sit on top of them."

The aquifers are similar to the ones below land, which much of the world relies on for drinking water, and their salinity is low enough for them to be turned into potable water, Dr Post says.
"There are two ways to access this water -- build a platform out at sea and drill into the seabed, or drill from the mainland or islands close to the aquifers."

read more: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131208085304.htm

Monday, December 9, 2013

Study: Experiencing hardship is GOOD for you: People who have pulled through hard times are happier in the long-run

Experiencing hardship is GOOD for you
The most painful experiences in life may come with an eventual upside, by promoting the ability to appreciate life’s small pleasures, scientists have said.

A new study suggests that people who have gone through divorce and coped with the death of a loved one, are better equipped to enjoy the little things in everyday life in the long-run.

A total of 14,986 adults were studied to see whether their exposure to life’s hardships affected their ability to enjoy positive experiences.

Researchers from the University of British Columbia and Barcelona School of Management, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, first determined participants’ exposure to painful experiences, including bereavement and divorce.

Individuals were asked to indicate whether they had experienced these events and, if so, to specify whether they felt they had emotionally dealt with the negative event or were still struggling with it.
They then presented the adults with six positive scenarios, which included going on a hike or looking at a waterfall, to see how if their past disrupted their enjoyment of present pleasures.

The study, which was published in the Social Psychological and Personality Science journal, found people who have previously dealt with pain are more able to enjoy transient pleasures.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2520698/Experiencing-hardship-GOOD-People-pulled-hard-times-happier-long-run.html#ixzz2mzepPQG7 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Think, know the facts, before you donate

think before you donate
As you open your pockets to do a good thing and make yourself feel good, please keep the following facts in mind:

The American Red Cross
President and CEO Marsha J. Evans' salary for the year was $651,957 plus expenses
It is called the March of Dimes because only a dime for every 1 dollar is given to research
The United Way
President Brian Gallagher receives a $375,000 base salary along with numerous expense benefits.
CEO Caryl M. Stern receives
$1,200,000 per year (100k per month) plus all expenses including a ROLLS ROYCE.
Less than 5 cents of your donated dollar goes to the cause.
CEO and owner Mark Curran profits $2.3 million a year.
Goodwill is a very catchy name for his business. You donate to his business and then he sells the items for PROFIT. He pays nothing for his products and pays his workers minimum wage! Nice Guy. $0.00 goes to help anyone!

Stop giving to this man. Instead, give it to ANY OF THE FOLLOWING

The Salvation Army Commissioner, Todd Bassett receives a small salary of only $13,000 per year (plus housing) for managing this $2 billion dollar organization. 96 percent of donated dollars go to the cause.
The American Legion National Commander receives a  $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!
The Veterans of Foreign Wars National Commander receives a  $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!
The Disabled American Veterans National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!
The Military Order of Purple Hearts National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Vietnam Veterans Association  National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!
 Make a Wish: For children's last wishes. 100% goes to funding trips or special wishes for a dying child.
St. Jude Childrens Research Hospital 100% goes towards funding and helping Children with Cancer who have no insurance and cannot afford to pay.
Ronald McDonald Houses All monies go to running the houses for parents who have critical Children in the hospital. 100% goes to housing, and feeding the families.
Lions Club International 100% of donations go to help the blind, buy hearing aides, support medical missions around the world. Their latest undertaking is measles vaccinations  (only $1 per shot).

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Science Studies Prove It: Alcohol is good for your health

Alcohol is good for your health
Alcohol is good for your health

Most of the evidence suggests that if red wine, in particular — and to a lesser degree white wine, beer, lager and spirits — were used as a preventive and therapeutic medicine, disease rates would fall substantially. Not only that, but lives would be saved — with huge benefits to the economy.

In fact, red wine may well be one of the most effective ‘medications’ in history.

Like other drugs, it has side-effects. It has a minimum and maximum therapeutic dose — take too little and it won’t work; take too much and it may make you ill.

And it has a daily treatment regime: ideally, you should take wine once a day with the evening meal.

Drug companies have spent billions trying to find a way of preventing colds, and failed.

However, the answer has been staring us in the face all along, because astonishingly, both wine and alcohol in general help prevent the common cold — and very effectively, according to a joint research venture between Harvard and Spanish universities in 2002.

The results were astounding: up to a 60 per cent reduction in the risk of catching a cold among red wine drinkers, and a staggering 88 per cent reduction in white wine drinkers.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2512175/Alcohol-good-health-leading-science-writer-claims-tipple-prevent-cancer-help-improve-sex-life.html#ixzz2lUQAGtqz

How to purify the mind

How to purify the mind
"Something inside you attracted you to read this—something that is interested in what is going on here, which corresponds to something going on within you.  First of all, what is going on here is not primarily about the words and ideas.  There is a spiritual energy available that is awakening and elevating.  Of course, the ordinary mind is full of doubt and distrust.  Why should anyone trust what is being said here?

The only validity of what happens here is found in your own inner experience.  Either something happens or it doesn’t.  There is no reason to take anyone’s word for anything, or to accept anything on blind faith.  The Truth can easily be proven, and you can prove the Truth for yourself.  The point is to know with full certainty, and not to merely ‘believe.’

The mind of the average person is filled with untrue beliefs and assumptions.  Even most educated people simply carry around a lot of useless knowledge.  In certain Eastern scriptures this is known as ‘limited knowledge.’  It is knowledge that actually limits us, such as 'I can't do that.'  True knowledge is what can be actually proven and applicable in practical life.  There is no reason to assume anything.  Assumptions invariably lead us down the wrong path."

Read more http://truthofthepresentmoment.blogspot.com/2013/11/the-purification-of-mind.html

Friday, November 22, 2013

Sex of Speaker Affects Listener Language Processing

Sex of Speaker Affects Listener Language Processing
Whether we process language we hear without regard to anything about the speaker is a longstanding scientific debate. But it wasn't until University of Kansas scientists set up an experiment showing that the sex of a speaker affected how quickly listeners identified words grammatically that there was evidence that even higher-level processes are affected by the speaker.

Based on the fact that Spanish words have a grammatical gender -- words ending in "o" are typically masculine and in "a" are typically feminine -- the researchers showed that the sex of a speaker affected how fast and accurately listeners could identify a list of Spanish words as masculine or feminine. When there was a mismatch between the sex of the speaker and the gender of the word, listeners slowed down in identifying the word grammatically and were less accurate. Both the speakers and listeners were native Spanish speakers.

Grammar and syntax have been thought for decades to be automatic and untouchable by other brain processes, said Michael Vitevitch, KU professor of psychology. Everything else -- the sex of the speaker, their dialect, etc. -- is stripped away as our brains process the sound signal of a word and store it as an abstract form. This is the abstractionist model of how we store words in memory championed by well-known cognitive scientist, linguist and philosopher Noam Chomsky and his followers.

An alternate school of thought conceives of our brains processing words using exemplars containing and indexing information about both the word and the speaker.

Read More: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131119141945.htm

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Bioengineer: the heart is one of the easiest organs to bioprint, we'll do it in a decade

Bioengineer: the heart is one of the easiest organs to bioprint, we'll do it in a decade
A team of cardiovascular scientists has announced it will be able to 3D print a whole heart from the recipients' own cells within a decade.

"America put a man on the Moon in less than a decade. I said a full decade to provide some wiggle room," Stuart K Williams told Wired.co.uk.

Don't miss: Study: 3D-printed ear made from calf cells and silver 'hears'

Williams is heading up the hugely ambitious project as executive and scientific director of the Cardiovascular Innovation Institute at the University of Louisville. Throughout his prestigious career spanning four decades he has focused on researching surgical devices and bioengineering, and the idea for printing the heart whole from scratch was inspired by the work of one of the pioneers in both these fields -- Charles Lindbergh. Lindbergh might be best known for flying solo across the Atlantic and for the Crime of the Century (when his infant son was kidnapped and murdered) but he also created a glass perfusion pump with Alexia Carrel that would keep the human heart alive outside the body, paving the way for heart surgery. The pair also discussed regenerative medicine in their book The Culture of Organs.

"For bioprinting it is the end of the beginning as bioprinted structures are now under intense study by biologists"

Stuart K Williams, Cardiovascular Innovation Institute

Some 70 plus years after the publication of that book, Williams' predictions shouldn't sound all that incredulous, but he admits it's been met with resistance. "That's why we are excited," he tells Wired.co.uk. "Funding is very limited as this is a new area. But as bioprinting successes occur the interest will increase and then funding -- so many breakthroughs have occurred in this way with a new untested idea that is moved forward with limited resources.

"For bioprinting it is the end of the beginning as bioprinted structures are now under intense study by biologists."

Read more: http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2013-11/21/3d-printed-whole-heart

Monday, November 18, 2013

Carbohydrates rot the brain': Neurologist slams grains as 'silent brain killers' - and says we should be eating a high-fat diet

Carbohydrates rot the brain': Neurologist slams grains as 'silent brain killers' - and says we should be eating a high-fat diet
Carbohydrates are rotting our brains and contributing to devastating diseases such as Alzheimer’s, an American neurologist has warned.

David Perlmutter, from Florida, believes that even ‘good’ carbs, such as grains, are severely affecting our brains.

And the staples of our modern diet aren’t only increasing the risk of dementia, but contributing to depression, epilepsy and headaches, he believes.

Instead of munching on wheat, carbs and sugar,which he calls the brain’s silent killers, we should revert back to the way our ancestors ate – with more meat and fat.

As Forbes magazine reports: ‘It’s in the food you eat,’ he writes in his best new book, Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth About Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar – Your Brain’s Silent Killers. ‘The origin of brain disease is in many cases predominantly dietary.’

The solution? Going back to the days when our diet was mainly fat – with this making up 75 per cent of our diet, and carbs just 5 per cent. Protein intake should stay the same as it is, at about 20 per cent.

Research has shown that a high-carb diet may increase the risk of dementia. A study published in Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that elderly people who ate a high-carb diet were more than three times as likely to develop mild cognitive impairment – which has been linked with a higher risk of dementia.

People whose diets were highest in ‘good’ fats, such as those found in nuts and healthy oils were 42 per cent less likely to get cognitive impairment. Those with a high intake of protein (such as meat and fish) had a reduced risk of 21 per cent.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2509255/Carbs-rot-brain-Doctor-slams-grains-silent-brain-killers.html#ixzz2l1arHAN0

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Scientists are left baffled by mind-bending animated optical illusion

Scientists are left baffled by mind-bending animated optical illusion

Are the dots moving straight or wriggling?

Are the dots moving straight or wriggling? Click on this to see: Scientists are left baffled by mind-bending animated optical illusion

Focus on the red cross while the dots are moving around.

You're probably seeing the dots wriggling around in different directions.

But in reality they’re moving in straight trajectories without ever colliding.

To convince your brain, focus on one dot without looking at the red cross and you will see it moving in a straight line.

Scientists at Keio University in Japan found that if white circles on a black field are moved in straight lines and allowed to cross, they appear to move in straight lines.

But if those lines avoided intersections, the dots appear to wriggle around instead.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2507097/Are-dots-moving-straight-wriggling-Click-Scientists-left-baffled-mind-bending-animated-optical-illusion.html#ixzz2kdgHOthK
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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Natural Alternatives: Britain pays mothers to breastfeed under pilot scheme

Natural Alternatives: Britain pays mothers to breastfeed under pilot scheme
New mothers in two areas of Britain are to be paid to breastfeed their babies, it was announced Tuesday, under a trial scheme aimed at boosting the practice in poor areas where it is "stigmatised".

Mums in Derbyshire, central England, and its neighbour South Yorkshire, will be offered shopping vouchers worth £120 ($200, 140 euros) if they breastfeed for the first six weeks, rising to £200 if they continue for six months.

Some 130 women from deprived areas will take part in the pilot scheme, which aims to establish whether financial incentives can boost a practice believed to bring significant health benefits to newborn babies.

"The UK has one of the worst breastfeeding rates in the world and breastfeeding rates vary very widely across different parts of the country," said Clare Relton of Sheffield University, which is running the pilot in collaboration with the government.

"Babies who are breastfed have fewer health problems such as upset tummies and chest infections, and are less likely to develop diabetes and obesity when they are older."

A six-week-old baby born into an affluent family in Britain is four times more likely to be breastfed than one in a deprived area, she added.

Britain's National Health Service recommends that mothers feed their babies only breast milk for the first six months -- but this only happens in 34 percent of cases, according to Relton.

Read more: http://www.france24.com/en/20131112-britain-pays-mothers-breastfeed-under-pilot-scheme

Monday, November 11, 2013

Fast-Mutating DNA Sequences Shape Early Development; Guided Evolution of Uniquely Human Traits

Fast-Mutating DNA Sequences Shape Early Development; Guided Evolution of Uniquely Human Traits
What does it mean to be human? According to scientists the key lies, ultimately, in the billions of lines of genetic code that comprise the human genome. The problem, however, has been deciphering that code. But now, researchers at the Gladstone Institutes have discovered how the activation of specific stretches of DNA control the development of uniquely human characteristics -- and tell an intriguing story about the evolution of our species.

In the latest issue of Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, researchers in the laboratory of Gladstone Investigator Katherine Pollard, PhD, use the latest sequencing and bioinformatics tools to find genomic regions that guide the development of human-specific characteristics. These results offer new clues as to how the activation of similar stretches of DNA -- shared between two species -- can sometimes result in vastly different outcomes.

"Advances in DNA sequencing and supercomputing have given us the power to understand evolution at a level of detail that just a few years ago would have been impossible," said Dr. Pollard, who is also a professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco's (UCSF's) Institute for Human Genetics. "In this study, we found stretches of DNA that evolved much more quickly than others. We believe that these fast-evolving stretches were crucial to our human ancestors becoming distinct from our closest primate relatives."

These stretches are called human accelerated regions, or HARs, so-called because they mutate at a relatively fast rate. In addition, the majority of HARs don't appear to encode specific genes. The research team hypothesized that HARs instead acted as "enhancers," controlling when and for how long certain genes were switched on during embryonic development.

Through experiments in embryonic animal models, combined with powerful computational genomics analyses, the research team identified more than 2,600 HARs. Then, they created a program called EnhancerFinder to whittle down that list to just the HARs were likely to be enhancers.

"These results, while preliminary, offer an unprecedented glimpse into how very recent changes to the human genome have modified the genetic programs that control embryonic development to potentially yield different results," said Dr. Capra. "We anticipate that if we were to look at the activity of HARs that are enhancers during later developmental stages, we would see even more differences between humans and chimpanzees."

"It's been 10 years since the Human Genome Project was declared 'complete,' but the amount of genomic knowledge we've gleaned since then -- in large part due to advances in bioinformatics and supercomputing -- have catapulted us far beyond what we thought we knew," added Dr. Pollard. "I'm confident that as we continue to dive deep into important regions such as HARs, we'll come ever closer to answering the question: what makes us human?'"

Read More: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131110204417.htm

Friday, November 8, 2013

Lower Education Levels Linked to Unhealthy Diets

Lower Education Levels Linked to Unhealthy Diets
People with lower levels of education may eat larger amounts of unhealthy, calorically dense food than those with a higher education level, possibly because they are more physically active, according to new research published November 6th in the open-access journal PLOS ONE, by Jonas Finger and colleagues at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin, Germany.

Studies consistently show that unhealthy diets are seen more often in people of lower socioeconomic status, a term based on factors such as education level, income level, and occupation. Overall physical activity, however, may also be related to socioeconomic status and dietary habits.

In this study, the authors used a large-scale survey approach to investigate the relationship between education level, food consumption, and physical activity. They analyzed a large database from a representative German adult population and found that German adults with a low level of education consumed more sugar- and fat-rich foods than adults with a high education level. They also consumed fewer fruits and vegetables than those with higher education levels.

Read more: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131106202251.htm

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

NFL player walks away from $1m contract because he 'wants to be happy'

NFL player walks away from $1m contract because he 'wants to be happy'
Many people dream of quitting the rat race - but few would expect a star NFL player to forgo fame and fortune.

John Moffitt, who plays for Denver Broncos has quit the league because he thought it was crazy to risk his happiness and health for wealth.

The third-year guard from Wisconsin said he knows teammates and fans don't understand how he could wave goodbye to his career.

Many people dream of quitting the rat race - but few would expect a star NFL player to forgo fame and fortune.

John Moffitt, who plays for Denver Broncos has quit the league because he thought it was crazy to risk his happiness and health for wealth.

The third-year guard from Wisconsin said he knows teammates and fans don't understand how he could wave goodbye to his career.

'I just really thought about it and decided I'm not happy. I'm not happy at all,' he said.

'And I think it's really madness to risk your body, risk your well-being and risk your happiness for money.

'Everybody, they just don't get it and they think it's crazy. But I think what I was doing is crazy.'

He said he didn't want to see things through this season for the shot at a Super Bowl.

'I don't care about the Super Bowl. I used to. I mean, anytime I played this game, I gave my heart to it and I'm a person that does thing with his heart.

'I don't need the Super Bowl experience. I played in great stadiums and I played against great players. And I had that experience and it's enough.'

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2488414/NFL-player-John-Moffitt-rejects-1m-contract-wants-happy.html#ixzz2jt0ewfBp

Monday, November 4, 2013

Stage 4 cancer sufferer writes how Obamacare means she no longer has her life-saving healthcare plan

tage 4 cancer sufferer writes how Obamacare means she no longer has her life-saving healthcare plan
A stage 4 cancer sufferer has written a powerful op-ed explaining that as a direct result of Obamacare she has lost her life-saving medical insurance and the team that has kept her alive.

Edie Littlefield Sundby, who has been battling gallbladder cancer since 2007, explained in a piece for the Wall Street Journal that she is 'one of the losers' in the president's signature healthcare plan.

'I am a determined fighter and extremely lucky,' she writes. 'But this luck may have just run out: My affordable, lifesaving medical insurance policy has been canceled effective December 31.'

Since learning that her plan with United Healthcare PPO will end within weeks, she has been scrambling to find out the alternatives for her care, she writes.

But she has learned that she must now either accept the government exchange plan and lose her world-class doctors or pay more for private insurance with an unfamiliar company.

It means that after fighting the cancer, which has a five-year survival rate of just two per cent, for nearly seven years, she faces the prospect of losing her team of primary doctors and oncologists, who have been crucial to saving her life.

She explains that her insurance company has paid $1.2 million for her treatment and has never doubted her doctors, but now it is pulling out of the individual California market.

There is no one health-exchange plan accepted by both of the medical centers she has come to rely on; it means she needs to choose between either keeping her primary oncologist at Stanford University or her primary care doctors at the University of California, San Diego.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2487123/Obamacare-means-stage-4-cancer-sufferer-NO-healthcare-plan-OR-doctors.html#ixzz2jhNo1Gqy

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Sunday, November 3, 2013

Alternative News: The brain-powered CAR: Vehicle monitors whether a driver is paying attention

Alternative News: The brain-powered CAR: Vehicle monitors whether a driver is paying attention
How many times have you had a close-call after being distracted behind the wheel?

According to road safety charity, Brake, probably far more often than you'd like to think.

The group estimates that a huge 22 per cent of all crashes are caused by driver inattention.

A new car, however, hopes to solve this problem by using a driver's brain waves to start the engine and keep it going.

The car features a neuro headset that connects brain activity to the car’s engine through customised software.

The headset has 14 sensors detecting electrical activity from the frontal, temple, parietal and perceptual areas of the brain.

The amount of activity in these areas registers what the driver is cognitively processing, or if they are zoning out.

When the driver is distracted, the software sends a cut-off signal to the car and the accelerator switches to idle safely slowing the car down.

The headset can tell whether a driver’s attention goes from the road to the radio, when their neural activity dips, or when their blink rate slows significantly.

A gyroscope in the headset can also detect when a driver significantly turned their head away from the road.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2483553/The-brain-powered-CAR-Vehicle-monitors-driver-paying-attention-slows-theyre-distracted.html#ixzz2jbPldnQM

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Breast Milk Protein May Be Key to Protecting Babies from HIV

Breast Milk Protein May Be Key to Protecting Babies from HIV
A substance in breast milk that neutralizes HIV and may protect babies from acquiring HIV from their infected mothers has been identified for the first time by researchers at Duke Medicine.

The protein, called Tenascin-C or TNC, had previously been recognized as playing a role in wound healing, but had not been known to have antimicrobial properties. The discovery could lead to potential new HIV-prevention strategies.

Reporting in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences during the week of Oct. 21, 2013, the researchers describe how the TNC protein in breast milk binds to and neutralizes the HIV virus, potentially protecting exposed infants who might otherwise become infected from repeated exposures to the virus.

"The discovery of the HIV inhibiting effect of this common protein in breast milk provides a potential explanation for why nursing infants born to HIV-infected mothers do not become infected more often than they do," said Barton F. Haynes, M.D., director of the Duke Human Vaccine Institute. "It also provides support for inducing inhibitory factors in breast milk that might be even more protective, such as antibodies, that would completely protect babies from HIV infection in this setting."

Read more:

Friday, November 1, 2013

Americans digest zettabytes (tons) of media and the sources are gorwing

Americans consume an enormous amount of media daily via television, radio, phone and computer. As you read this article on the Internet, perhaps while checking the text messages on your smartphone or listening to satellite radio, that statement undoubtedly rings true. But exactly how much media flows to individuals and households in a year? Try 6.9 zettabytes -- that's 6.9 million MILLION gigabytes.

This massive U.S. media consumption is the topic of "How Much Media? 2013 Report on American Consumers," produced by the Institute for Communication Technology Management (CTM) at the USC Marshall School of Business and CTM Visiting Researcher James E. Short.

The report looks at media consumption by individuals in and out of the home, excluding the workplace, between 2008 and 2015, breaking "media" down into 30 categories of media type and delivery (e.g. television, social media, computer gaming). Information reported in the study was canvassed from several hundred data sources, including media measurement firms such as Nielsen, Arbitron, ComScore, investor and analyst firms, government sources and foundation and research publications.

Growth From 2008-2012

• U.S. media consumption totaled 3.5 zettabytes, an average of 33 gigabytes per consumer per day (One byte is one character of text. A gigabyte is 109 bytes. A zettabyte is 1021 bytes.). By 2012, total U.S. consumption had increased to 6.9 zettabytes, an average of 63 gigabytes per person per day. Put another way, researcher Short said, if we printed 6.9 zettabytes of text in books, and stacked those books as tightly as possible across the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii, the pile would be almost 14 feet high.

• In 2008, Americans talked, viewed and listened to media for 1.3 trillion hours, an average of 11 hours per person per day. By 2012, total consumption had increased to 1.46 trillion hours, an average of 13.6 hours per person per day, representing a year over year growth rate of 5%.

2015: What's Ahead

• By 2015, the data indicate that Americans will consume media for more than 1.7 trillion hours, an average of approximately 15.5 hours per person per day. The amount of media delivered will exceed 8.75 zettabytes annually, or 74 gigabytes -- 9 DVDs worth -- of data sent to the average consumer on an average day.

• Mobile messaging hours, which in 2012 accounted for approximately 9% of voice call hours, will double to over 18% of voice hours, a year over year growth rate of more than 27%.

• Viewing video on the Internet averaged less than 3 hours a month in 2008; by 2012, viewing time increased to almost 6 hours a month, a year over year growth rate of 21%. By 2015, the report projects that Americans will be watching video for almost 11 hours a month, a compound annual growth rate of 24% a year.

• From 2008 to 2015, total annual hours for users of Facebook and YouTube will grow from 6.3 billion hours to 35.2 billion hours, a year over year growth rate of 28%.

Media Consumption:

Looking across different sources of media -- from traditional media (TV, radio, voice calls) to new digital sources (tablet computers, mobile gaming devices, smartphones, mobile video) -- the report makes a surprising discovery. "Despite the popular belief that the ubiquitous computer and smartphone dominate modern media life, traditional media, including TV, radio and voice calls, still account for two-thirds of total U.S. household media time," Short concluded. "Of course the picture is a changing one as digital platforms continue to grow, but they are still only a third of total annual media time."

New digital sources, however, are having major effects on most forms of media consumption. If we change our focus from the time people spend viewing media to the number of bytes presented, over half of all bytes are now received by computers, with mobile computers the most rapidly growing segment. The report also includes data on Americans' use of media dating back to the 1960s. Over those decades, the supply of digital media measured in bytes has been growing at compounded rates ranging between 6 and 30 percent each year. Media consumption, on the other hand -- what we actually pay attention to -- has been growing at compounded rates ranging between 3 and 5 percent each year.

Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131030111316.htm

A Fluoride-Free Pineal Gland is Essential For Balanced Living

A Fluoride-Free Pineal Gland is Essential For Balanced Living
Nearly all vertebrate species possess a pineal gland. The pineal gland (also called the pineal body, pineal organ, epiphysis cerebri, epiphysis, conarium or the "third eye") is a small endocrine gland in the vertebrate brain. It produces the serotonin derivative melatonin, a hormone that affects the modulation of wake/sleep patterns and seasonal functions.

Its shape resembles a tiny pine cone (hence its name), and it is located near the center of the brain, between the two hemispheres, tucked in a groove where the two rounded thalamic bodies join.

There has been some controversy over the activity of adding synthetic fluoride to municipal water supplies and elsewhere, but not enough. The seriousness of this issue is more than what most realize. Fluoridation ranks with GMO's and tainted, forced vaccinations among the great crimes against humanity.

Understanding the Different Fluorides

There are two types of fluoride. Calcium Fluoride, which appears naturally in underground water supplies, is relatively benign. However, too much consumed daily can lead to bone or dental problems. Calcium is used to counter fluoride poisoning when it occurs. This redeeming factor indicates that the calcium in naturally formed calcium fluoride neutralizes much of fluoride's toxic effects.

On the other hand, the type of fluorides added to water supplies and other beverages and foods are waste products of the nuclear, aluminum, and now mostly the phosphate (fertilizer) industries. The EPA has classified these as toxins: fluorosilicate acid, sodium silicofluoride, and sodium fluoride.

For this article, the term Sodium Fluoride will include all three types. Sodium fluoride is used for rat poison and as a pesticide. According to a scientific study done several years ago, Comparative Toxicity of Fluorine Compounds, industrial waste sodium fluorides are 85 times more toxic than naturally occurring calcium fluoride.

Generally, most fluoride entering the body is not easily eliminated. It tends to accumulate in the body's bones and teeth. Recently, it has been discovered to accumulate even more in the pineal gland, located in the middle of the brain.

This consequence of dental fluorosis, which seriously harms teeth, from daily fluoridation has been documented. Yet, the American Dental Association (AMA) continues beating a dead horse, promoting fluoride. There is a refusal to admit that instead of preventing tooth decay, fluoride causes even more dental harm.

The flood of sodium fluoride in water and food also creates other more serious health problems that are not widely publicized, even suppressed. Nevertheless, in addition to fluorosis, independent labs and reputable researchers have linked the following health issues with daily long term intake of sodium fluoride.

According to investigative journalist Christopher Bryson, author of The Fluoride Deception, getting large quantities of sodium fluoride into the water and food system was a ploy of public relations sponsored by the industries who were saddled with getting rid of the toxic materials.

In the early 1950's, the notorious spin master and father of advertising, Edward Bernays, continued the campaign for adding fluorides to water supplies as an experiment in engineering human consent! Then the AMA picked up on the dental issue and endorsed sodium fluoride's addition to water supplies. The few dissenting health studies and reports were usually squashed. Those dissenting voices were dismissed as quacks regardless of their credentials.

Read more: http://www.naturalnews.com/026364_fluoride_pineal_gland_sodium.html#ixzz2jPfyftcz

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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Finally - Refreshed K-12 Science Standrads To Produce More "Hands-On" Learning

Refreshed K-12 Science Standrads To Produce More "Hands-On" Learning
Teaching and learning science in U.S. K-12 schools just got more interesting. Working with the National Research Council (NRC), an advisory group of scientists, cutting-edge child education experts, and science teachers have developed the first set of science teaching standards in more than 15 years. This framework for science education offers students and teachers the means to engage with science through more hands-on experiences and includes a section on developing climate literacy, which has not previously been included.

Dr. Michael Wysession, science textbook author and associate professor of earth & planetary sciences at Washington University in St. Louis, served as a member of the NRC's Committee on a Conceptual Framework for New K-12 Science Education Standards, which helped put together the new Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Wysession is the lead-off speaker for the NGSS session at the meeting of The Geological Society of America in Denver this week. In his talk "Earth and Space Science in the Next Generation Science Standards," Wysession will emphasize the significant changes in the NGSS for the teaching of earth and space science.

Wysession says, "The greatest disservice you can do to American students is make them memorize long lists of facts." The new standards take the pressure off students and teachers by making experiential learning the focus, rather than working through a long list of facts. "Jargon is not the focus," he says, while asking questions is fundamental. Each of the eight science and engineering practices, presented in the NGSS, Wyession notes, "begins with a verb." These are 1. Asking questions (for science) and defining problems (for engineering); 2. Developing and using models; 3. Planning and carrying out investigations; 4. Analyzing and interpreting data; 5. Using mathematics and computational thinking; 6. Constructing explanations (for science) and designing solutions (for engineering); 7. Engaging in argument from evidence; and 8. Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information.

Wysession points out that teachers are now being asked to meet a growing demand: U.S. businesses are calling for a work force that is educated in science and technology. These new standards, and the classroom dynamics that they will help to create, are a huge step forward for both educators and businesses, as well as for students.

Susan M. Buhr-Sullivan of the University of Colorado Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES), who will also speak in the kick-off session, writes, "The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) represents the best opportunity for geosciences education since 1996, describing a vision of teaching excellence and placing Earth and space science on a par with other disciplines."

Read More: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131027123419.htm

Monday, October 28, 2013

Sorry, guys, life doesn't begin at 40 any more! Most men now only feel settled at 54

Sorry, guys, life doesn't begin at 40 any more! Most men now only feel settled at 54

Sorry, guys, life doesn't begin at 40 any more! Most men now only feel settled at 54

The famous saying 'life begins at 40' doesn't now ring true for most men, if a recent survey is anything to go by.

According to new research, life begins at 54 for most men - that's the age of Simon Cowell, Hugh Laurie and Kevin Spacey.

The main reasons that men believe their life begins later are financial pressures and the trend towards late fatherhood.

Traditionally, 40 was the age when men were finally able to enjoy life as a 'real adult'.

When a man reached 40 he was supposed to have left behind the insecurities of his 20s and 30s and achieved a level of financial stability.

In the past, his children would have reached an age where they were approaching self-sufficiency.

But the average age of a first-time father has shot up to 32 - with two-thirds of babies in the UK born to fathers over the age of 30.

The survey looked at the top insecurities that have lead to men not feeling settled until they are 54 - just 11 years off the retirement age of 65.

Top of the list of insecurities was the fear that they will never be able to pay for their home.

The second biggest body insecurity for men is losing their hair, the third biggest fear is losing their job and the fourth is not being in a settled relationship.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2478374/Sorry-guys-life-doesnt-begin-40-Most-men-feel-settled-54-Simon-Cowell.html#ixzz2j2hoj4He

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Antibotics dont work any longer - they are no match for the rise of superbugs according to experts

Antibotics dont work any longer - they are no match for the rise of superbugs according to experts
The discovery of antibiotics in 1928 by Professor Alexander Fleming revolutionized medicine, allowing doctors to treat hundreds of millions of people suffering from illnesses that had been considered terminal for centuries.

But now the tides have turned as medicine and lifestyles have changed dramatically.

We've reached the end of antibiotics': Top CDC expert declares that 'miracle drugs' that have saved millions are no match against 'superbugs' because people have overmedicated themselves

A high-ranking official with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has declared in an interview with PBS that the age of antibiotics has come to an end.

'For a long time, there have been newspaper stories and covers of magazines that talked about "The end of antibiotics, question mark?"' said Dr Arjun Srinivasan. 'Well, now I would say you can change the title to "The end of antibiotics, period.”'

The associate director of the CDC sat down with Frontline over the summer for a lengthy interview about the growing problem of antibacterial resistance.

Srinivasan, who is also featured in a Frontline report called 'Hunting the Nightmare Bacteria,' which aired Tuesday, said that both humans and livestock have been overmedicated to such a degree that bacteria are now resistant to antibiotics.

‘We're in the post-antibiotic era,' he said. 'There are patients for whom we have no therapy, and we are literally in a position of having a patient in a bed who has an infection, something that five years ago even we could have treated, but now we can’t.’.

Dr Srinivasan offered an example of this notion, citing the recent case of three Tampa Bay Buccaneers players who made headlines after reportedly contracting potentially deadly MRSA infections, which until recently were largely restricted to hospitals.

About 10 years ago, however, the CDC official began seeing outbreaks of different kinds of MRSA infections in schools and gyms.

‘In hospitals, when you see MRSA infections, you oftentimes see that in patients who have a catheter in their blood, and that creates an opportunity for MRSA to get into their bloodstream,’ he said.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2477273/Weve-reached-end-antibiotics-Top-CDC-expert-declares-miracle-drugs-saved-millions-match-superbugs-people-overmedicated-themselves.html#ixzz2iqkc6JJE

Friday, October 25, 2013

Eating 30 almonds a day reduces hunger pangs and doesn't cause weight gain and 97% of Americans do snack every day

Snacking has become something of a national pastime, with an estimated 97 per cent of people munching their way through at least one snack a day.

While this habit may keep hunger at bay, it's fuelling an obesity epidemic.

Now new American research may hold the answer -  munching on almonds can reduce hunger without increasing weight.

Researchers at Purdue University, in Indiana, found that eating 1.5oz of dry-roasted, lightly salted almonds every day reduced volunteers’ hunger, improved their Vitamin E levels and ‘good’ fat intake, and did not cause them to pile on the pounds.

1.50z of almonds is equivalent to 43g or around 30 individual nuts.

The researchers conducted a four-week trial to investigate the effects of eating almonds on weight and appetite.

The study included 137 adults at increased risk of type 2 diabetes.

The participants were divided into five groups - a control group that avoided all nuts and seeds, a group that ate 1.5oz of almonds at breakfast and one that ate the nuts at lunch.

There was also a group that snacked on them in the morning, and one that ate them in the afternoon.

The volunteers were not given any other rules other than to follow their usual eating patterns and physical activity.

The results showed that even though they were eating approximately 250 calories a day in the form of the almonds, they did not eat any more calories overall.

‘This research suggests that almonds may be a good snack option, especially for those concerned about weight,’ said Dr Richard Mattes, professor of nutrition science at Purdue University and the study's lead author.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2476628/Always-hungry-Eating-30-almonds-day-reduces-hunger-pangs-doesnt-cause-weight-gain.html#ixzz2ikfiK8wW

Who is your Daddy? No phone call, no Internet transaction, isn't recorded by the NSA

 No phone call, no Internet transaction, isn't recorded by the NSA
Whistle-blower Edward Snowden has hit back at claims by a U.S. government official that collating phone records is not ‘surveillance’.

Senator Dianne Feinstein wrote in a newspaper recently that what the NSA is gathering is not protected under the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable searches.

She wrote in USA Today on Sunday: ‘The call-records program is not surveillance. It does not collect the content of any communication, nor do the records include names or locations.’

She added: ‘The NSA only collects the type of information found on a telephone bill: phone numbers of calls placed and received, the time of the calls and duration. The Supreme Court has held this "metadata" is not protected under the Fourth Amendment.’

However Snowden, although he didn’t name the lawmaker, clearly had her comments in mind when he gave a statement to the American Civil Liberties Union about phone tracking.

He said: ‘In the last four months, we've learned a lot about our government.

‘We've learned that the U.S. intelligence community secretly built a system of pervasive surveillance. Today, no telephone in America makes a call without leaving a record with the NSA. Today, no internet transaction enters or leaves America without passing through the NSA's hands. Our representatives in Congress tell us this is not surveillance. They're wrong.’

He made the statement in support of a demonstration against government privacy invasion taking place in Washington D.C on Saturday.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that U.S. spying on allies has shattered trust in President Obama's administration 

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2476731/Edward-Snowden-fires-U-S-government-surveillance-denials.html#ixzz2ikeHcnPW

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Where in the U.S. should you live? Graphic shows which state matches your personality

Where in the U.S. should you live? Graphic shows which state matches your personality
Where in the U.S. should you live? Graphic shows which state matches your personality

    - 13 year study used personality test data taken from over 1.6 million people
    - West Virginia found to be the most neurotic state
    - South Carolina is the most conscientious, while Maine is the least hard working
   -  Washington DC is both the least agreeable and the most open

The age old belief that people living on the West Coast of the United States are more relaxed and creative than those living in the east is now scientifically proven, following a 13 year study to map the moods of America.

Researchers led by psychologist Jason Rentfrow, an American now working at the University of Cambridge in the U.K., analyzed personality test data from over one million people to identify three distinct personality regions.

They found people living in north eastern states tended to be temperamental and uninhibited, while those living along the West Coast were more creative and relaxed.

Meanwhile people living in the central and southern region were found to be more friendly and conventional.

The study, published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, collected data from over 1.6 million people over a 13-year period.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2473707/Where-U-S-live-Graphic-shows-state-matches-personality.html#ixzz2ia75IV7H

The Movie About Hillary Clinton That She Wants Banned From Theaters

The Movie About Hillary Clinton That She Wants Banned From Theaters
Video with many connected people about Hillary and her history - honestly.

Wide ranging study on sex habits in America: the National Health and Social Life Survey

Journal of Sexual Medicine, the study
Filling 130 pages of a special issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine, the study offers detailed findings on how often Americans have sex, with whom, and how they respond. In all, 5,865 people, ranging in age from 14 to 94, participated in the survey.

The lead researchers, from Indiana University's Center for Sexual Health Promotion, said the study fills a void that has grown since the last comparable endeavor – the National Health and Social Life Survey – was published 16 years ago. Major changes since then include the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, the types of sex education available to young people, the advent of same-sex marriage, and the emergence of the Internet as a tool for social interaction.

Dr. Dennis Fortenberry, a pediatrics professor who was lead author of the study's section about teen sex, said the overall findings of such a huge survey should provide reassurance to Americans who are curious about how their sex lives compare with others.

"Unless, like al-Qaida, you feel there's something abnormal about the American people, what these data say is, 'This is normal – everything in there is normal.'"

The researchers said they were struck by the variety of ways in which the subjects engaged in sex – 41 different combinations of sexual acts were tallied, encompassing vaginal and anal intercourse, oral sex, and partnered masturbation.

sex behavior graph

Read more: http://www.nationalsexstudy.indiana.edu/

Switzerland produces novel approach to prostitution and it's working for EVERYONE

Switzerland produces novel approach to prostitution
Switzerland's first sex drive-in, which opened two months ago in a bid to take prostitution off Zurich's streets, has been a success, the city said Tuesday following an initial evaluation.

"After two months I can say that this guarded prostitution site is working," Michael Herzig, director of social services for sex workers in the city, told reporters.

Zurich opened the fenced-in site, which is only accessible by car, in an industrial sector on the outskirts of town in August to move sex workers out of the city centre and provide them with a safer working environment.

The drive-in, approved by 52.6 percent of Zurich voters in a March 2012 referendum, has a track where the sex workers can show off their assets and negotiate a price, and nine so-called "sex boxes" where they and their clients can park and conclude the transaction.

Machines resembling parking metres have been installed, and the prostitutes are required to contribute 5.0 Swiss francs ($5.40, 4.05 euros) each night in taxes to help Zurich cover the cost of running the place.

Security guards are on hand to ensure there is only one man in each car coming in, as well alarm buttons in each "sex box", on-site doctors and social workers.

"We did not have any major problems, such as with pimps, violence or the neighborhood," Herzig said.

He said he was surprised things had gone so smoothly.

An average of 14 sex workers had used the site each day since it opened, he said.

That is fewer than half the 30-odd who had been working on Sihlquai, in downtown Zurich, the city's most notorious red-light street until prostitution was banned there in August.

Read more: http://www.france24.com/en/20131022-switzerlands-first-sex-drive-success-zurich