As amateur golfers, we’d love to play like the pros. There’s no doubt that you would trade your banana slice for Dustin Johnson’s penetrating 300-yard drive down the middle of the fairway or Collin Morikawa’s impeccable ball striking in a heartbeat.
Unfortunately, we have limiting factors — be they physical ability, money, time or something else. But that doesn’t mean we can’t adopt a few things the Tour pros do to stay in shape in our own lives. [Read more…] about Growing research supports Heart Rate Variability (HRV) biofeedback training to lower stress and anxiety, increase sports performance
Disrupted routines and worries about coronavirus have made it harder for us to sleep this year. For example, reports suggest there was a 15% increase in prescriptions for sleep medication prescriptions at the beginning of the pandemic in the U.S., and a 37% increase in insomnia in China.
Importantly, if you’ve been feeling out of sorts over the past few months, the lack of sleep could be partly to blame. [Read more…] about Tip: To manage stress, sleep better. To sleep better, keep a good routine and manage stress.
Yes (in perhaps 8% of individuals). Can mindfulness and meditation be harmful? (Science Focus):
Meditation has escaped both the religious cells of monks and nuns and the labs of scientists. An increasing number of people are using meditation apps to deal with mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety. Although there is no clear estimate of how many people are practising meditation, last year one single app had close to 40 million downloads. [Read more…] about Debate: Can mindfulness and meditation be harmful?
COVID-19 has touched each of us somehow. Many now recognize that caring for our mental health is as essential as addressing the virus if we are to emerge stronger, more connected and more resilient.
The Ancient Greeks said “know thyself” to live soundly, but it is only now that we have the technology to start understanding how our individual experiences arise from the complexity of our brains. [Read more…] about How COVID-related stress can disrupt your brain circuits and nine tips to prevent it
Welcome to a new edition of SharpBrains’ e‑newsletter, featuring 14 research findings, resources and tips for brain health … and starting with this fascinating study:
- Five are “neck up:” Lower education level, Lower cognitive activity, Head trauma, Repeated episodes of depression, High-levels of long-term stress.
- Five are “neck down:” Hypertension in mid-life, Orthostatic hypotension, Diabetes, High BMI, High levels of homocysteine. Systematic review finds ten lifestyle factors that clearly impact the probability of developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD)
#3. “The healthiest people are the ones who grow with age and experience; even in times of trouble like these.” — Dharma Singh Khalsa, MD, President of the Alzheimer’s Research and Prevention Foundation. On Stress, Yoga Meditation, and The Evolution Revolution
#4. “Acceptance that Alzheimer’s disease is a lifestyle disease, little different from other age-related diseases, that is the sum of a lifetime is the most important breakthrough of the decade.” — George Perry, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. Higher body mass index (BMI) linked to lower blood supply to the brain in large neuroimaging study
#5. “Attention is a scarce resource. Think about your attentional focus as the beam of a light. If the light is on an object it cannot be on other objects at the same time with the same intensity … Although we typically have the feeling that multitasking saves us time, it is often not the case.” Simple, quick brain teaser to test the limits of multitasking
#6. If it appears to rotate, RT Fun optical illusion to tease your mind
#7. Every cloud has a silver lining: How and when will the telemedicine surge reach mental healthcare?
#9. “In a time when emotions like stress, anxiety, boredom, and anger are hard to avoid, a new study suggests that a particular meditation practice can help us face them.” Study: Meditation practice, both formal and informal, helps develop equanimity over time
#10. Ever since discovering Barbara Arrowsmith-Young’s life trajectory via Normain Doidge’s fantastic book The Brain That Changes Itself, we have been impressed by her creativity, stamina and courage. Coming soon: Virtual World Tour at the frontier of applied neuroplasticity, education and learning difficulties
#11. “Neural signals will be used to develop algorithms that will help researchers determine the optimal brain state under which individuals can receive information. From there, the team will determine the most effective means of enhancing the subjects’ ability to intake and process information. This could range from non-invasive neuromodulation—or brain stimulation—techniques to the use of augmented reality to alter perceived environmental conditions.” Air Force announces research platform to harness closed-loop neurotechnology and accelerate learning “on the fly”
#12. Good to hear that “ensuring the privacy and security of study participants’ data is a high priority for both UCLA and Apple. UCLA will process and maintain study data in a secure environment … UCLA and Apple will analyze the data only after they are coded and stripped of names and other contact information.” UCLA launches major mental health study collecting & analyzing data from Apple wearables to better understand depression and anxiety
#13. Flexibility is good except when it isn’t: Study finds how scientists can reach different conclusions analyzing the same brain scans
#14. “I have so much to accomplish today that I must meditate for two hours instead of one” — Gandhi, as quoted in Seven evidence-based reasons to start meditating yesterday
Wishing you a safe and healthy September,
Alvaro Fernandez on behalf of the SharpBrains Team
We are living through a time of uncertainty, a sky-high pile of question marks. It has become increasingly difficult to make plans because the state of our world today is so volatile due to the coronavirus pandemic. Some people are adapting to their homes becoming their offices indefinitely, or in danger of losing their jobs, while others long to embrace loved ones they are stuck six feet away from. [Read more…] about Study: Meditation practice, both formal and informal, helps develop equanimity over time