Sunday, April 9, 2017

A few scientific nuggets.

1. Being a Night Owl is a Genetic Inheritance. 

    Researchers at the Rockefeller University in the US have discovered that a variant of the gene
    CRY1 slows the internal biological clock - called the circadian clock - that normally dictates
    when you feel sleepy each night and when you are ready to wake. People with the "night owl"
    variant of this gene have a longer circadian cycle than most, making them stay awake later,
    researchers said. Compared to other mutations that have been linked to sleep disorders in just
    single families worldwide, this is a fairly impactful genetic change.

    The so called 'night owls' are often diagnosed with delayed sleep phase disorder(DSPD). Their
    24 hour sleep cycle is delayed, making them energetic long after most people have fallen asleep.
    Going to bed late has its side effects in that they're forced to wake up before their bodies tell them,
    so as to make it in time for school or at work, leading to insomnia or fatigue during the day.

2. Vitamin C Does Not Cure Cold!

     The myth that vitamin C cures cold started back in the '70s after Nobel prize winner Linus
     Pauling discovered the supposedly miraculous benefits of the vitamin and published a book on
     the subject. The book, 'Vitamin C and the Common Cold' was a huge hit.
     But according to Sara Chodosh, writing for popular science, there is actually no real clinical
     evidence to prove it. Certain studies have found evidence that regular usage might shorten the
     duration of your cold but not when taken after the onset of the cold.

     Others have found associations with daily dosage and lower risk of cardiovascular diseases,
     though still more have shown no relationship whatsoever.

3. Pets Protect Kids from Allergies?

    A new study shows that babies from families with pets - 70% of which were dogs - showed
    higher levels of two types of microbes associated with lower risks of allergic disease and obesity.
    The theory is that exposure to dirt and bacteria early in life can create early immunity, though
    researchers aren't sure whether the effect occurs from bacteria on the furry friends or from human
    transfer by handling the pets. The study is being conducted at the University of Alberta in Canada.


It was a rather quiet Sunday. Padmakumar's mother has been discharged from hospital but she has been advised complete bed rest by her doctor. Now, that's a tall order for Pidavoor Amma!

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