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Questions tagged [physiology]

Human physiology is the science of the mechanical, physical, and biochemical functions of humans in good health, their organs, and the cells of which they are composed. The principal level of focus of physiology is at the level of organs and systems within systems.

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Do women who live together get synchronized menstrual cycles?

I found a Wikipedia article on Menstrual synchrony, which claims: Menstrual synchrony, also known as the McClintock Effect, or the Wellesley Effect [1] is a phenomenon reported in 1971 wherein the ...
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Does drinking alcohol dehydrate you?

I've often thought that it doesn't and that this was just a myth, and this BBC article backs me up: but [water] can be contained in food, alcohol or caffeinated beverages. Yes, beer and coffee ...
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Does electricity grab?

It is said that if someone accidentally touches a powerful electric source, they get stuck to it and often die due to the same effect. Is it true, or it is just a perception of the affected person?
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Do headless chickens run around?

It's a clichè that is constantly repeated by the likes of Gordon Ramsey: You are running around like headless chickens! source Also, for example, they do in South Park animations Do ...
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Are all the atoms in our bodies replaced on a regular basis?

In a related question, Are all cells of the human body completely replaced every seven to ten years?, it is explained that there are cells in the human body, like neurons, that are never replaced. ...
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Is Shaolin monk Hu Qiong using “Chi energy” to withstand an electric drill?

In one of the episodes of Stan Lee's Superhumans (the excerpt in question can be viewed here) a Shaolin monk named Hu Qiong claims that by training his body and "transfering Chi to the right part of ...
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Does a typical human on a western diet have undigested protein stuck in their body from years of eating certain foods?

Last night I watched the movie Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. The movie followed two unhealthy people who suffered from a chronic disease on their juice fasts and subsequent lifestyle changes. Their ...
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Is there a point of no return when starving to death?

I was looking at this image on Wikipedia of two children during the Russian famine of 1921-1922. The caption reads (my translation): Famine in Russia. III. The two stages of hunger: the skeletal ...
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Does wearing summer clothing during the winter increase your tolerance to the cold?

My dad could tolerate long periods of time outside during the winter while wearing shorts and a t-shirt. He told me he started wearing warmer-weather clothing during the winter, and eventually his ...
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Does willpower depend on the amount of glucose in the body?

How strong is the evidence for the argument made in Willpower by Baumeister and Tierney? Basically willpower (or better: "self-control") is supposed to be proportional to the amount of glucose in ...
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Is the comeback of measles in the US “largely due to anti-vaxers?”

From CNN: In some recent years, there have been fewer than 100 cases nationwide. But the [measles] virus has made a comeback in other years, including 2019 -- largely due to anti-vaxers, experts ...
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Is the human menstrual cycle related to the lunar cycle?

I've heard that the female menstrual cycle follows a pattern of the lunar cycle, mostly as an evolutionary adaptation so that menstruation (and hence detectability by predators because of the smell of ...
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Do side sleeping postures contribute to breast sagging?

CNN claims that sleeping on your side and sleeping on your stomach can lead to saggy breasts. Sleeping on your side can cause you to get wrinkles," Glaser says. Blame all that smushing of one side ...
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Does the human body crave missing vitamins?

My mother has told me that if your body needs a certain vitamin, you will find you feel like eating fruits that include that vitamin. For example, if you have lack of Vitamin C, you'll get a craving ...
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If you put your hand in water while sleeping/drunk, will you pee yourself?

This is like an urban myth and a classic prank, but I never saw it in action. Supposedly if someone is passed out or sleeping, the contact with water will make him pee. Is this true? If true, why ...
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Does the brain limit muscle strength in humans, but not in other apes?

In researching whether the brain limits our muscle strength, Sciencedaily has a quote: Add to this the effect of severe electric shock, where people are often thrown violently by their own extreme ...
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Is there a relation between brain physiology and gender identity?

I recently came a cross a blog post that talked about DSD or Intersexuality as they rather call it. One of the claims that was made is that gender identity (that is, whether I think of myself as male ...
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Will getting your feet wet make you sick?

I keep on reading about people living in the Northern Hemisphere who warn their children not to get their feet wet or else they will "catch the death of your cold". Is this really true? I mean will ...
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Can the body never lose fat cells?

There are various articles online quoting studies (or even loosely referring to "studies" without reference) claiming you can only gain fat cells but not loose them. Some examples include Calorielab....
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Are all cells of the human body completely replaced every seven to ten years?

It have heard several times that, every seven to ten years, all the cells that our body are made of have all been replaced. Example in this NY Times Article This heartening truth, which arises from ...
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Does your heart stop beating when you sneeze?

I read the following quote in a paper: When you sneeze, all your body functions temporarily stop working. That also includes you heart beat. There is of course no explanation, reason, source, or ...
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Are women's hands colder, and their hearts warmer?

I heard on the radio today that apparently a woman's hands are colder than a man's hands, but her heart is warmer. I didn't really believe this, but they stated that it was apparently scientifically ...
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Could someone dig themselves out of a grave?

Some notable stories and movies show characters being buried alive, and then digging themselves out. This has apparently happened in reality, such as this story: Girl digs self out of grave, points ...
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Do mechanical techniques for penis enlargement work?

According to several different penis enlargement companies, and an unsourced claim on Wikipedia, men have been trying to enlarge their penis for over 2,000 years. Over the years, many different ...
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Do specific exercises target specific fat deposits?

It is common to see marketing for exercise routines that claim to target fat deposits in a particular part of the body. Examples: 9 Moves to Beat Belly Fat for Good 8 moves to melt off that pesky ...
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Does sleeping naked in a sleeping bag keep you warmer?

The most popular question on outdoors.SE is Is it warmer to sleep naked in a sleeping bag? Now, all the answers over there are not properly researched and it was suggested in one of the comments ...
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Does diet affect the taste of semen?

After reading the latest explosm comic I realized that I often heard about this claim, but never read anything drawing from credible sources. Eating pineapples makes semen taste better. On the ...
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Is umami a real flavor, or a marketing strategy?

I've been watching today's Paul Hollywood's Pies and Puds, and they have just had a shown a segment where they create seaweed dessert to sample a fifth human taste, umami. Apparently the perception ...
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Will a worm, cut in half, survive as two worms?

I have often heard the story that if you cut a worm in half in the middle, both halves of the worm will grow the other part back, and you will eventually end up with two worms. Is this true?
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Are one-hit knockouts possible?

After stumbling upon a video of a guy getting knocked down in one hit, I did some quick research and couldn't conclude if this is a myth or not. The video in itself is very a compelling evidence for ...
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Could smoking cause erectile dysfunction?

I was told that smoking 'menthol' cigarettes could cause erectile dysfunction. But I don't know how much of this is true so I wanted to know how much of this is true... Here is an example of the ...
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Is breaking bricks/wood “karate style” an impressive feat?

Related: How do Shaolin monks break spears with their neck? For anyone unacquainted with the fairly impressive looking feat of breaking bricks (or wood) in martial arts, see THIS 1.5min video. I'd ...
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Does plucking/epilation impact hair growth?

I've recently encountered the idea that plucking an area of hair (say, with tweezers) causes the hair to grow back thicker/denser/stiffer etc. yet I remain skeptical. This concept is rampant with ...
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Is excessive use of chewing gum bad for you?

Chewing sugar-free gum is good for your teeth. But what about the rest of your body? Would constantly chewing gum have any negative effects? An argument I have heard is that the increased amounts of ...
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Is any unconscious person capable of full splits?

The following popular article on stretching claims that lack of flexibility is purely neurological (or even psychological) and that [almost] any unconscious person would be very stretchy, e.g. can be ...
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Does drinking water upside-down help cure hiccups?

I was under the impression that drinking water upside-down worked for curing hiccups (when they worked) merely due to a placebo effect, or at the very least didn't work any better than just drinking ...
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Do monkey bars make you taller?

My mom -- a doctor -- and my relatives seem to think that hanging off monkey bars make you taller as it "stretches" your spine. I seriously doubt if this is true, unless you hang off monkey bars 24/7....
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Can you knock someone out with pressure points, in the style of a Vulcan nerve pinch?

Is it possible to pinch someone's nerve (on the shoulder) in a manner similar to the way Spock would do on Star Trek such that the person would either pass-out or result in being temporarily paralyzed?...
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Are bone conduction headphones safer with regards to hearing loss?

In this video, at about 1:35, a claim is made that bone conduction headphones are safer with regards to hearing loss, because the sound doesn't "affect the eardrum". Is that true? I thought hearing ...
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Can a camera flash blind the eyes of a baby?

This story in the Daily Mail talks of a case where a newborn baby lost its eyesight due to the camera flash. Doctors said the three-month-old, who has not been named, has suffered irreparable ...
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Do Hubbard Electrometers (E-meters) detect emotion about past experiences?

I saw a table set up for "Free Stress Test" that someone was sitting at looking forlorn because everybody was walking past. I asked how it worked and she got me to sit down with these two cans ...
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Do hot baths damage skin or nerves?

I like to take showers and baths hot enough to leave my skin pink when I come out. One of my friends has a much lower tolerance to hot water and has said that that soaking in hot water can damage the ...
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Do you feel pain in a life-threatening situation?

Let's say you are in a war-situation, and both you and your opponent are out of bullets. When I was in the army, I learned that the most efficient way to kill your opponent would be to kick him in the ...
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Can someone get pregnant merely by using the swimming pool?

This Daily Mail story says that a woman went to court as her daughter got pregnant by swimming. A mother is suing a hotel claiming her teenage daughter fell pregnant simply from using a hotel ...
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Does stretching help children grow taller?

This article claims: Stretching is a great way to increase height. Get your child to start with simple stretches like the wall stretch. Make him stand against a wall with the back towards it. ...
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Does a vinegar bandana help against tear gas?

In the context of the "occupy" protests, I've head a couple of times that you should carry a bandana or cloth soaked in vinegar with you, and in case the police uses tear gas/irritants, you should ...
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Are ergonomic keyboards better for your health?

Popular consensus seems to be that ergonomic keyboards (with the middle split or curve) are better for your physical health than standard keyboards, and reduce the likelihood of carpel tunnel syndrome ...
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Does sleeping with our heads pointing towards north pose any health risks?

Does sleeping orientation (pointing one's head in a specific direction) has anything to do with any health problems(even minor ones)? If Earth's magnetic field has any detrimental effects on our ...
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Any validity to palmistry?

Unlike fortune-telling techniques, palmistry (or palm reading) has a potential connection with reality. Are there any studies that relate any personality traits to shapes of the hand, or lines?
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Can humans have extra vertebrae without noticing them?

In an answer to How important is it that a person be able to touch their toes?, someone said that they found out they had an extra vertebra from their chiropractor. I'm skeptical about their specific ...