Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley suggested in an interview on Thursday that leaders in the government who are of an advanced age should undergo a “cognitive test.” [Read more…] about Revisiting the question: Should older politicians, and other leaders, undergo cognitive testing?
Wow, that was a couple of very insightful discussions, via social media no less.
#1. The first one was about whether heads of state and candidates to high office should pass a cognitive/ mental fitness test. Click HERE to read and discuss some of the sharpest comments, such as…
- “I wonder what brought this up.”
- “Definitely. We routinely screen applicants for a wide range of jobs.”
- “Then the balance of political power would shift towards the designers of those tests.”
- “That’s what debates are for.”
- “Yes, but probably nobody would pass it.”
- “No, because if we can’t judge that for ourselves, then what business do we have voting at all?”
#2. The second debate centered on the future of mental health: In ten years, will we see DSM‑6 or Something Much Better (SMB‑1)? Would you say “Something better hopefully” or “Well considering we approach mental health from a disease model.…that’s the first problem” or “DSM is a tool, and a very useful one. As any other tool it depends on the use you make of it,” or something else.
Welcome to a new edition of SharpBrains’ e‑newsletter, featuring as always new thinking, research and tools for lifelong brain health and mental fitness.
#4. Let’s understand how to increase resistance to tau and amyloid proteins so we can all become “super-agers.” Brain scans show lower accumulation of tau and amyloid pathology among cognitive “super-agers”
#6. Wanted: 30,000 volunteers! Large UC study to investigate when and how brain training transfers (or does not) to broader cognitive and health benefits
#7. Timely questions: “How common are neurological and psychiatric complications in patients with COVID-19? What proportion of neurological and psychiatric complications affect the (central nervous system) versus the peripheral nervous system, and are novel syndromes emerging? And who is most at risk?” Survey finds ischaemic stroke and altered mental status as most common neurological complications in severe COVID-19 cases
#8. “Our mind is one of the only things that we cannot consistently measure and quantify. And humans do remarkable things when we can measure something.” Kernel raises $53 million to ease access to rich neural data and market Neuroscience as a Service (NaaS)
#9. “We are taking proven cognitive behavioral therapies and fully automating them to deliver the care scalably and consistently as drugs.” Startup Big Health raises $39M to universalize access to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety and poor sleep
#10. Building on Bill Gates’ original goal of ‘a computer on every desk,’ perhaps it’s time for ‘real-time mental health support on every phone.’ Microsoft announces support for three innovative mental health services harnessing artificial intelligence (AI)
#11. Resonance. Empathy. Awareness. Compassion. Hope. And our favorite… Humor. Six tips to help regulate stress levels in our organizations
#12. Finally, a fun brain teaser. What do you see, rectangles or circles?
Wishing you a good and safe August,
The SharpBrains Team
Time for a new edition of SharpBrains’ e‑newsletter!
1. Food for (nonpartisan) Thought: Should heads of state and candidates to high office pass a cognitive/ mental fitness test?
2. A school psychologist shares good tips to support our kids and, yes, manage our own stress. Three Ss to reduce the stress of “homeschooling” our kids: Simplify, Structure, Support.
4. Great partnership! Kaiser Permanente offers Calm mental fitness app at no cost to millions of members.
5. “Just as you can’t self-introspect to determine your cholesterol, much of the highest-value information about ourselves and each other sits outside our conscious awareness.” — Bryan Johnson, Founder and CEO of Kernel, as Kernel launches Neuroscience as a Service (NaaS) built on non-invasive brain recording technology.
6. Fascinating conversation on how and why “Practice actually changes the physicality of your brain” — Q&A with Rick Hanson on Neurodharma, brain science, personal practice and well-being
7. May this trend continue (and for better reasons): Growing interest in digital mental health among insurers and medical care providers.
8. Particularly promising for multiple sclerosis, ocular hypertension, diabetes, and traumatic brain injury: Portable brain assessment device by Headsafe secures 510(k) FDA clearance.
10. If not a limerick, perhaps a few brain teasers. Say the months of the year in alphabetical order. Too easy? Well, try doing so backwards, in reverse alphabetical order. Five quick brain teasers to flex those Attention and Working Memory mental muscles
11. You have been invited to a fundraising gala at your old college (via Zoom of course) and decide that this black-tie event demands a super white Italian shirt, like the one you bought years ago for your wedding. Ready for some quick math? Try this Brain Teaser: What shirt size you need?
Have a great month of June,
The SharpBrains Team
After a very busy month, it’s time now for SharpBrains e‑newsletter to summarize the latest initiatives, tools and ideas for lifelong brain health and mental fitness — and to share a few puzzles and illusions to tease your brain.
A growing number of classrooms in China are equipped with artificial-intelligence cameras and brain-wave trackers. Video: Crystal Tai for The Wall Street Journal.
New neuro-infused education and healthcare initiatives:
- China is harnessing brain-wave trackers and artificial-intelligence to raise better (and more compliant?) students
- Report calls for wide classroom-based adoption of ten brain fitness programs designed to improve foundational executive functions
- The National Health Service (NHS) in the UK considers adding a 5‑minute cognitive test to its annual health check-up
- CVS Health: Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) apps may help you more than sleeping pills
New neurotech and digital health tools:
- What does the Facebook acquisition of CTRL-Labs mean for Neurotechnology and Augmented & Virtual Reality?
- Startup Aural Analytics raises $4.3M to monitor neurological health by analyzing speech patterns
- Will personalized meditation apps be able to replicate the experience of working with a coach?
- IBM, VA and Total Brain to test digital mental health platform for veterans and reservists
New thinking on brain and mental health:
- Two great professional development opportunities with renowned neuropsychologist Dr. Elkhonon Goldberg
- Apple/ Eli Lilly’s bet: Wearable and mobile consumer devices may well help us detect cognitive impairment and dementia
- May “industry review boards” contribute to the wider adoption of virtual and augmented reality for physical and mental health?
Finally, a few fun brain teasers for adults and kids alike 🙂
- Tease your brain with the Hermann Grid illusion
- Brain teaser to test your pattern recognition: Fill the void
- Math brain teaser requiring no math — just perception and cognition
Have a great month of October,
The SharpBrains Team
“Cognitive impairment is one of the core symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS)—and one of its most troubling concerns for many people with the condition. Now, a new study from NYU Langone Medical Center may provide hope for symptomatic relief for [Read more…] about Next: Scalable, medication-free relief of cognitive symptoms related to Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
Nevada officials to require brain health testing for fighters (Las Vegas Review-Journal):
“The Nevada Athletic Commission will require all licensed fighters in the Silver State, including professional boxers and mixed martial athletes, to undergo regular brain health testing, officials announced Tuesday in Washington, D.C. [Read more…] about New Nevada regulation requires professional fighters to undergo regular computerized cognitive testing