10 remarkable things about the human brain

Unexpected Fact #1:
There are no right-brained versus left brained people!
Unexpected Fact #2:
Awareness can not be traced back to a specific point in the brain!

I found out about these -and at least 10 more- remarkable facts by reading ‘The Human Brain Book’ By Rita Carter, a highly recommended read if you are interested in all aspects the human brain.

The Human Brain - Rita Carter ( on Amazon)
The Human Brain Rita Carter

 

10 remarkable things about the human brain:

 

  • Did you know that no human brain is the same? Human brains are built according to the construction plan of the genes, but each set of genes is unique.

 

  • The corpus callosum, the part that unites the two human brain halfs is bigger in women. This might be the cause of the ability of most women to be more emotionally aware.

 

  • Dyslexia is more common with left-handed people.

 

  • Einsteins’ brain missed a groove in the parietal lobe. The area underneath is involved in mathematical thinking. This could be the reason why Einstein had this capacity for capturing the universe in mathematical equations.

 

  • The basic structure of the human brain is finished when a child is three years old. Some parts, like the prefrontal cortex are still offline.

 

  • The prefrontal cortex is fully developed when your 30 years old. The emotional brain is fully developed now. The prefrontal cortex is activated by emotions and leads to more thoughtful perceptions.

 

  • Gamma-aminoacid (GABA), produced by the hypothalamus decreases wakefulness,
    and helps you fall asleep.

 

  • There is a circuit in the small brain that measures time. This circuit transmits the data to the motor cortex so muscles can move.

 

  • That is why, when you want to fall asleep, you should walk when it is dark. The darkness increases the fabrication of melatonin.

 

  • To cure phantom pain, people with dissected limbs like arms or legs, look into a mirror that projects those limbs moving. this illusion can alleviate phantom pain.

 

Mindfunda Verdict:

‘The Human Brain Book’ by Rita Carter is an easy to read book, filled with remarkable facts about the human brain and it will give you so much information about our most important organ.
(yes my dear male readers, the human brain is the most important organ of our body).

 

If you want to flaunt your most sexy organ, feel free to order this great shirt to support Mindfunda anD all our good work:
"My brain is the most beautiful part of my body" - Shakira quote about the human brain
My brain is the most beautiful part of my body” – Shakira quote about the human brain.

 

Brain waves can move objects

There has been much debate about brain waves and telepathy. Science was not in favor of the idea, disposing of the subject as being “Accidental”. Almost all of us remember the laboratory experiences of people like Robert van de Castle, Stanley Krippner and Montague Ullman in the ’70s. There was a lot of debate about the accuracy and the repeatability of the experiments.

Brain waves can move objects

More and more science seems to meet magic. We all loved the fact that science helped a paralised lady to drink. The latest inventions use brain waves to make objects fly. The Puzzlebox Orbit, a former Kickstarter project has gone viral, and raised 74,799$.

 

Joshua Marcias has a background in electrical and biomedical Engineering. His business partner Steve Castelotti from Puzzlebox is a computer scientist. It is about time science and magic meet. Take a look how using brain waves makes the helicopter fly. Concentration is needed to create the brain waves that keep the helicopter floating. Puzzlebox is marketed as a tool to learn people to focus, meditate and concentrate. The more one uses these abilities, the more the brain gets familiar with it. Even though this is not a proven fact, it is a very cool gadget to play with.

The Puzzlebox orbit helps you to concentrate and clear your mind. If you are focused, your mind produces a specific type of brainwaves. These brain waves are picked up by a control set.

puzzlebox-orbit-mobile_edition using brain waves
On the right side of the picture is the headset that captures your brain waves

 

If brain waves are able to set a material object, a drone, in motion it make you wonder what else brain waves are capable of.  Sending out waves to another mind? Your brain is used to the brain waves of your spouse (that is why a lot of people are not able to fall asleep when their loved one is not around). Connecting with other people, or even worlds like the ancient people thought? Would it be able to create a fascilitation device that enables you to connect with another brain?

Anyway, this is a very cool gadget, I would love to have one!
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Three steps to a good night sleep

3 Steps from good food to a good night sleep (which are actually four steps)

Our brain has this magical natural recipe for a good night sleep, you just have to add the right ingredients! In our food there are some important proteins. One of them is called Tryptophan, and I am going to tell you about it today. Tryptophan is like the Hypnos under the proteins, it acts like the god of sleep. How do we get this sleep god to work?

images

Here are 3 simple steps to get a good night sleep:

Step #1: from good food to Tryptophan:

The first thing you got to do for a good night sleep is start eating good healthy food, the food that actually flew, walked or swam when it was alive, and vegetables that kissed the ground of mother earth. That is how you get Tryptophan. From good food. Especially rich in Tryptophan are seeds, tuna fish, eggs and bananas.

Step #2: from Tryptophan to Serotonin

Tryptophan is only the first building block of Melatonin, the hormone that gets us to sleep and dream (The Morpheus under the proteins). You need to have enough vitamin B, vitamin C, Zinc, Magnesium and a good gut to build 5 http from Tryptophan. Why a good gut you ask? Well we are on our way to build Serotonin. Yes, the feel-good hormone Serotonin is constructed out of Tryptophan in your gut. So one of the things you need to do is restore your gut when you want have a good Serotonin level.

But even more important: recent research by Nils Paumann, Diego Walther, and colleagues show that serotonin plays a key role in controlling insulin secretion and that its absence leads to diabetes. So Tryptophan which the body turns into Serotonin regulates your blood sugar level and your cravings as well.

Step #3: from Serotonin to Melatonin

In the last step, under the influence of diminishing daylight and your night time rituals your serotonin level gets transformed into melatonin. So make sure you don’t get extra light at night by watching tv too late, or working on your iPad or iPod, create a ritual before you go into a good night sleep, go easy on the melatonin you can buy at your local drugstore cause it sets back your biological clock and that may not be the problem. In fact, most doctors would advice you to stop taking artificial melatonin.

Bonus-step (that makes #4): 

But let your final step please be to take up healthy food habits. So let’s first quit sugar! Sugar gives you a high. You feel happy when you eat a lot of sugar. Every time you are on a sugar high the receptor cells for insulin in your body get less sensitive to insulin.

Say what??? Well it is your body’s way to protect your brain. Your brain is your number one organ and too much insulin gives you low blood sugar levels. And if you have a low blood sugar level your brain does not have gas anymore, so the engine drops down. And your brain does not want that to happen!

One of the best ways to get a good night sleep started is with “The 21 Day Sugar Detox” program by best-selling author Dian Sanflippo.

Feel free to comment below, and be sure to share it with your friends

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Valentines day Mindfunda Thought: your brain is in love on Valentine’s Day

Valentines Day Mindfunda Thought:  You’re in love, that means your brain is in love.

What does love in the brain look like? Let’s explore:  Valentines day, your brain in love. On February 14th, Valentine’s day,  a lot of couples will celebrate their commitment, children will write a card full of compliments for their parents and you might just want to send a nice card to that one good single girlfriend just to let her know she is appreciated.
But what is that love-thing? Neurological? How does Valentines day look inside your brain?

During al the decades of research, love still remains a mystery. It is an ancient, complex intertwining of the neurological system, the hormones, and the mind. You do not fall in love with everyone you see. Most of the time, there is only one person that makes your heart beat faster.

In the brain in MRI scans there is an increased activity in the Ventral Tegmental Area (VTA) of the brain. The award system runs overtime, dopamine crushes your brain: you are addicted.

A psychologist called Arthur Aron, professor psychology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook has experimented with ways to fall in love. He wrote a book about it: Love and the expansion of Self. Here is how you do it:

  • find a complete stranger.
  • talk to that person for at least half an hour about intimate details of each others lives: what are your goals, what do you love most, what would constitute a perfect day for you, tell your life story and ask the other person to do the same .
  • the last four minutes, without talking, stare into each others’ eyes.
Love and the expansion of Self, Arthur Aron, Elaine Aron
Love and the expansion of Self, Arthur Aron, Elaine Aron

Well if that doesn’t woo your stranger, don’t worry. In recent years Dr. Helen Fisher did research about why we fall in love with certain people and not with others. According to her insights there are three motivators for love. The Sex drive, driven by testosterone. Romantic Attraction driven by dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin and Attraction driven by oxytocin and vasopressin. The activity in the nucleus accumbent suggests that love is highly addictive. We crave, we become obsessed, we become anxious when we fall in love.

But why do we fall in love with a certain person rather then with any person walking around, being single and available? Here is where the brilliance of Helen Fisher comes in. She discovered 4 types of people. 

  • Curious energetic types driven by dopamine. The people who like to travel and discover new things. Optimistic, unreflective, sensation seekers. Those people like people who are like them.
  • Cautious/norm compliant people driven by serotonin. These are the people who can organize, who are structured and rule driven. Those people like people who are like themselves.
  • Analytical/tough minded people driven by testosterone. Decisive, bold and direct, they like to get to the point. Those people like the Prosocial/empathic people.
  • Prosocial/Empathic people driven by estrogen and oxytocin. They see the big picture, linguistically skilled, trusting, seek harmony, diplomatic. These people are drown to the Analytical/tough minded people.
Why him? Why her? Helen Fisher Ph.D

Most of all just enjoy Valentines day. Treat yourself to something nice, a sunset, a good lunch, laughing with friends, a good book about the brain and most of all the company of the people you love.
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