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Stress

Stress relieving lemons

Stopping to smell the roses is a good mantra to encourage you to take the time to appreciate what’s around you. Stopping to smell the lemons might not have the same ring to it, but scientists in Japan have shown how doing just that can actually alter gene activity and blood chemistry in ways that measurably reduce stress.  Read More

The adjustable tent design allows the user to find the perfect typing position

Laptops are an absolute necessity for the many road warriors who regularly key on the go, but as any portable computer enthusiast will attest, the integrated keyboard often gives rise to comfort and productivity concerns. Can a solution be found in the Goldtouch Go! Travel keyboard?  Read More

Cities with MLB baseball teams have a lower divorce rate!

The family unit is society's fundamental unit - 95 percentage of US citizens marry by age 55. A marriage breakdown is one of the most stressful life events possible, yet more than one in three will experience the trauma of divorce. Not surprisingly, the dynamics of relationships are increasingly the focus of ever more research. The University of Denver Center for Marital and Family Studies in particular is constantly shedding new light on the institution of marriage with recent research findings establishing that the quality of the relationship with parents-in-law is directly connected to marital satisfaction, and more recently, that 90 percent of couples experience a decrease in marital satisfaction once their first child is born. A new study from the centre looking at divorce rates before and after cities got Major League Baseball teams is fascinating in its implications. The study showed that cities with major league baseball teams had a 28 percent lower divorce rate than cities that wanted major league baseball teams. Can marital harmony really be this simple?  Read More

First-of-its-kind study warns of jury service trauma

March 23, 2009 In the first study of its kind, a new report by psychologists at the University of Leicester warns of the dangers of jurors facing trauma because of their exposure to harrowing and gruesome evidence. The research confirms that jury service, particularly for crimes against people, can cause significant anxiety, and for a vulnerable minority it can lead to severe clinical levels of stress or the symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder. Women jurors are particularly vulnerable if the trial covers material that resonates with their personal histories.  Read More


 Image courtesy of Family and Children's Trust Fund of Virginia

McGill University and Douglas Institute scientists have discovered that childhood trauma can actually alter your DNA and shape the way your genes work. This confirms in humans earlier findings in rats, that maternal care plays a significant role in influencing the genes that control our stress response. Using a sample of 36 brains; 12 suicide victims who were abused; 12 suicide victims who were not abused and 12 controls, the researchers discovered different epigenetic markings in the brains of the abused group. These markings influence the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) function, a stress-response which increases the risk of suicide.  Read More

Munch's 'The Scream' - a classic representation of sheer terror.

Memory-induced panic attacks can be absolutely crippling for sufferers of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - the suffocating, gripping fear associated with traumatic memories can destroy victims' careers, relationships and the normal functioning of their lives. But a team of Dutch clinical psychologists are developing an almost magical cure, using a single dose of a common and fairly harmless beta-blocking drug that seems to be able to separate the panic emotion from the factual elements of the memory - leaving patients with an apparently lasting ability to recall and talk about the traumatic incident without the usual devastating rush of fear.  Read More

HeartMath's emWave Personal Stress Reliever

Here at Gizmag we try to keep our stress levels down, but sometimes a stiff drink and a quick match at Guitar Hero doesn't quite cut it, so we naturally fell in love with HeartMath's emWave Personal Stress Reliever. The emWave PSR is a handheld device that monitors your heart rate and provides feedback that allows you to train yourself to maintain a regular heart rate and breathing rhythm - resulting in reduced stress. We originally covered the emWave PSR when it was first released in 2006 - but at CES 2009, Gizmag's Kate Seamer got a chance to try it out and have a chat with Catherine Calarco from HeartMath.  Read More

Chromosomes (stained blue) end in protective caps called telomeres (stained yellow), which...

September 6, 2008 Stress is a function of our primal origins. When the body is under stress, it boosts production of cortisol to support the 'fight or flight' response we all have at the heart of our operating system. If the hormone remains elevated in the bloodstream for long periods of time, though, it wears down the immune system. Every cell contains a tiny clock called a telomere, which shortens each time the cell divides. Short telomeres are linked to a range of human diseases, including HIV, osteoporosis, heart disease and aging. Previous studies have shown that an enzyme within the cell, called telomerase, keeps immune cells young by preserving their telomere length and ability to continue dividing. UCLA scientists have found that the stress hormone cortisol suppresses immune cells' ability to activate their telomerase. This may explain why the cells of persons under chronic stress have shorter telomeres.  Read More

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