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66 votes
Accepted

Do methamphetamines give more pleasure than other human experiences?

It's somewhat simplistic view that dopamine is directly proportional with pleasure. This was a mainstream hypothesis in the 1980s, but has fallen out of favor: The idea that dopamine was a mechanism ...
against very long user names's user avatar
63 votes
Accepted

Are obese patients in the US commonly sent to zoos for CT scans?

A 2011 literature review looked at the problem as it related to one particular condition: Difficulties in diagnosing pulmonary embolism in the obese patient: A literature review. They conclude that ...
Oddthinking's user avatar
  • 143k
58 votes

Can video games cause seizures?

Yes, video games can cause seizures, even in people without a prior history. For example, as described in the 1994 paper Video game induced seizures: Fifteen patients who experienced epileptic ...
Laurel's user avatar
  • 31.6k
21 votes
Accepted

Is the Eye of Horus symbol based on the human brain?

Short answer: Most certainly no, but as so often, it's impossible to prove a negative. The Cultural Meaning of the Brain There are many descriptions of how the brain was discarded during mummification,...
Elmy's user avatar
  • 771
12 votes
Accepted

Can anyone function on just 2 hours sleep per night?

Short version: A short-sleep human phenotype has been described in the literature. However, the reported sleep times I found in the scientific literature for those people are around 6h / day vs. 8h ...
cbeleites unhappy with SX's user avatar
10 votes

Are obese patients in the US commonly sent to zoos for CT scans?

There is anecdotal evidence to support the notion that some obese patients might have been referred to a zoo. Here is a recent NY Times article that explores the standard of care obese patients are ...
ventsyv's user avatar
  • 7,124
8 votes
Accepted

Does it take 30 seconds for a person to consciously realize that they're awake?

The problem is that even specialists in this field of sleep medicine use terms like "awake" or "arousal" with different meanings. In the sentence emphasized in the question "awake" almost certainly ...
against very long user names's user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

Does listening to classical music "Improve Cognitive Function"?

Yes, though the improvement is not direct, not large, and not just from classical music. Listening to any emotionally positive music has been shown to improve a subject's mood, which in turn has ...
Giter's user avatar
  • 11.6k
8 votes

Can video games cause seizures?

Yes. Unlike television or movies, video games are an interactive medium, giving each player a different experience. This unpredictability makes it difficult for developers to catch potentially seizure-...
Stevoisiak's user avatar
7 votes

Will rats given the ability to artificially stimulate their pleasure centers starve to death?

A version of this claim is present on Wikipedia: Experiments have shown rats will forgo food to the point of starvation in order to work for brain stimulation or intravenous cocaine when both ...
Arnon Weinberg's user avatar
7 votes

Are male and female brains connected in a completely different manner?

The study being referenced is almost certainly Sex differences in the structural connectome of the human brain by Ingalhalikar et al, PNAS 111 (2) 823-828. The description of the figure in the Italian ...
benrg's user avatar
  • 3,540
6 votes
Accepted

Does converting handedness lead to memory disorders?

Current evidence: Non-dominant hand training activates the dormant motor control areas in the brain. The path from brain to dominant hand is well-traveled, she explains. But when a person starts ...
pericles316's user avatar
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6 votes

Is MSG excitotoxic?

There doesn't seem to be any evidence for this. Here is one study: Conventional toxicity studies using dietary administration of MSG in several species did not reveal any specific toxic or ...
tim's user avatar
  • 52k
6 votes

Do we dream every night?

Yes, we (adults) dream more than once every night. The University of Californa has a Dream Research team. Their FAQ explains: How often do we dream, and when? Most people over the age of 10 dream at ...
Oddthinking's user avatar
  • 143k
6 votes

Do emotionally-driven tears release toxins from the body?

No, not "toxins" but yes, hormones. Emotional tears help you excrete stress hormones from your body. Emotional tears have special health benefits. Biochemist and “tear expert” Dr. William Frey at ...
Django Reinhardt's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Is sleep "defragmentation" for your brain?

There is a plethora of scientific work that all points towards sleep being very important for the kind of cleanup and reorganisation you are referring to. Information like this is readily available e....
DevSolar's user avatar
  • 19k
5 votes

Does salt (or sodium) not make you thirsty?

TLDR summary: the high-school science summary of thirst regulation (by salt) is correct, but it's quite incomplete as a thirst regulation mechanism in general. In (recent) animal research, faster ...
against very long user names's user avatar
5 votes

Near death experiences -- clinically dead person "sees" something, later verified to be true?

Scientists at Southampton University have found evidence that 'awareness continue for at least several minutes after clinical death' which was previously thought impossible. The following study has ...
kenorb's user avatar
  • 512
5 votes
Accepted

Can meditation decrease your brain's age by up to 25 years?

I have no background in neuroscience but will try to unpack the claim a little bit. In the Washington Post, there is a 2015 interview with neuroscientist Sarah Lazar. Her lab at Harvard University ...
Brian Z's user avatar
  • 7,490
4 votes

Did Jason Padgett become a math genius after getting hit on the head?

I learned about this fellow recently and am glad I found this question through Google, since my impression has been that the media has been making a mountain out of a molehill. My short answer is that ...
PrimeNumberHobbyist's user avatar
4 votes

Do antidepressants cause brain damage?

The article you refer to seems biased and misleading. It quotes multiple serious-looking papers, then reaches a conclusion not mentioned in any of them. Several articles (e.g. this and this) claim ...
ugoren's user avatar
  • 619
4 votes

Will rats given the ability to artificially stimulate their pleasure centers starve to death?

Starve maybe, die of thirst almost certainly. You are correct, the experiments they are referring to are the series of experiments by James Olds and Peter Milner in the 1950's 60's and 70's that ...
John's user avatar
  • 154
4 votes

Does SuperBrain yoga improve cognition?

A quick Google Scholar search found these articles, which are very different in what they measure. Cognition I was not able to read the full paper, but the abstract says quite a lot (emphasis added): ...
Laurel's user avatar
  • 31.6k
4 votes
Accepted

Is the experience of unified perception produced by the (physical) brain?

The information in the video is incomplete, outdated, and the cited journal is not popular among neuroscientists (every publication in "Cognitive Neurodynamics" gets cited close to 2 times per year. ...
noumenal's user avatar
  • 693
4 votes

Does the inner ear play a large role in regulating respiration?

There may actually be some association between respiration and the inner ear in infants. Apart from the sources mentioned in the question, I have found a single other study in Perceptual and Motor ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 5,022
3 votes

Can brain tests on toddlers predict future criminality?

It depends on what the meaning of the word "is" "predict" is. Let's assume that the study is true (I haven't seen any contradicting ones). Number of prisoners in Australia: The national ...
user5341's user avatar
  • 31.3k
3 votes

Does the right eye feed information to the left brain hemisphere while the left eye feeds information to the right brain hemisphere?

No, the right half of the field of vision goes to the left brain, and vice versa. A quick search showed up a book by a Harvard professor with this quote: A massive stroke in the left side of the ...
IMSoP's user avatar
  • 9,005
3 votes

Does broccoli have a nervous system?

From Involvement of receptor potentials and action potentials in mechano-perception in plants Australian Journal of Plant Physiology (2001) volume 28, page 567-576: Plants are always exposed to ...
DavePhD's user avatar
  • 107k
3 votes

Is transcranial Direct Current Stimulation beneficial for a healthy human brain?

Having looked through a few meta-analyses this looks like modern neuro snake oil. Transcranial direct current stimulation has no effect. The overview (Transcranial direct current stimulation: State ...
John's user avatar
  • 129

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