Meditating Raises Spirits More than a Vacation

Meditating Raises Spirits More than a Vacation

Scientists from the University of California at San Francisco, and Harvard Medical School, in Boston, tested the effect of vacations and meditation on the genes of 64 women between the ages of 30 and 60 that were novice meditators. They all spent six days at the same resort in California.

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Orca Finale: Sea Mammals Freed from Showtime

Orca Finale Sea Mammals Freed from Showtime

The California Orca Responsibility and Care Advancement Act, sponsored by Congressman Adam Schiff, is aimed to end the famous SeaWorld orca shows. “It means no more wild capture, no more breeding. We would essentially phase out the captive orcas that are currently in these water parks,” says Schiff.

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Help for Injured Wildlife: Caring Rehab Gives Them a Second Chance

Help for Injured Wildlife Caring Rehab Gives Them a Second Chance

Seeing lost, injured or orphaned animals is heartbreaking, but unless a wild animal is in immediate danger from prey or traffic, it’s best to wait and observe. Mothers forage for food and return to the babies intermittently. If in doubt, call a wildlife rehabber for advice.

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Natural Sounds Soothe the Brain

Natural Sounds Soothe the Brain

Sussex University researchers in the UK tested the .brain activity of 17 healthy subjects as they listened to a series of soundscapes from either natural or artificial environments. Brain scans and questionnaires found that natural sounds led to relaxation and positive feedback, while artificial sounds activated stress and anxiety-related brain activity.

Fresh Looks at Autism: Focusing on a Child’s Optimal Potential

Fresh Looks at Autism Focusing on a Child’s Optimal Potential

by Linda Sechrist

A new paradigm shift regarding autism spectrum disorder (ASD) centers on evolving beliefs about the possibilities for those living with autism, as well as the unimagined brilliance they possess and their need for supportive help. Everyone can benefit from the results of hands-on research and experience by parents and caregivers that are finding non-traditional ways to help special needs children deal with issues related to emotional and cognitive detachment and isolation.

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Nature Rights: Waterways Granted Personhood

Nature Rights Waterways Granted Personhood

This year, the Whanganui River, in New Zealand, became the first in the world to be granted the same legal rights as a person. Equally vital, a court in northern India has given the sacred Ganges and Yamuna rivers, as well as several glaciers, the legal status of “living human entities” to help in the preservation and conservation of the country’s highly polluted waterways, thus allowing polluters to be sued.

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ELLEN LANGER: How Changing Your Thinking Changes Everything

ELLEN LANGER How Changing Your Thinking Changes Everything

by April Thompson

For 40 years, Social Psychologist Ellen Langer has conducted pioneering research on the power of our minds to shape health and well-being. Langer’s work demonstrates that changing what we think and believe can transform not only our experiences, but also our bodies—a once-radical idea now common among neuroscientists.

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Buzzing RoboBees: Tiny Robots Seen as Tech Fix for Reduced Bee Population

Buzzing RoboBees Tiny Robots Seen as Tech Fix for Reduced Bee Population

Harvard University researchers led by engineering professor Robert Wood have introduced the first RoboBees—bee-sized robots that can ascend and hover in midair while tethered to a power supply.

The project is a breakthrough in the field of micro-aerial vehicles.

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Eating Fruit Lowers Cardiac Risk

Eating Fruit Lowers Cardiac Risk

Scientists from the University of Oxford and the Chinese Medical Academy studied 500,000 healthy adults in China for seven years, tracking medical records of illnesses and deaths. They found that a 100-gram serving of fruit per day (primarily apples and oranges) reduces the risk of dying from a heart attack or stroke by one-third.

FEAST IN THE FIELDS: The Rise of Pop-Up Organic Dining

FEAST IN THE FIELDS The Rise of Pop-Up Organic Dining

by John D. Ivanko and Lisa Kivirist

The flip side of enjoying farm to table is taking the table to the farm. Socalled “pop-up feasts” are booming at farms throughout the country during growing and harvest seasons. While the format varies, dinners are typically hosted on working rural or urban farms, last about three hours and include aperitifs and a tour before the meal.

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