July 18: AROUND THE WORLD
Does dim light make us dumber?
Impact of lighting
Spending too much time in dimly lit rooms and offices may actually change the brain’s structure and hurt one’s ability to remember and learn, say neuroscientists. In the study, Nile grass rats exposed to dim lights for four weeks performed poorly in a maze-like task.
The researchers from Michigan State UniversityÂ said that sustained exposure to dim light led to significant reductions in a peptide that helps maintain healthy connections and neurons in the hippocampus, an area of the brain critical for learning and memory.
Decline in brain function
Sleeping more may curb sugar cravings
Healthy food choicesÂ Â
A recent study from UK has found that increasing time in bed by an hour may reduce cravings for sugary foods and promote healthier food choices. The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, showed that the participants who increased the amount of sleep they got each night reduced their sugar intake by 10 gm the next day. They also had a lower daily carbohydrate intake.
This study strengthens the link between less sleep and poor-quality diets. Earlier studies have also indicated that getting insufficient sleep is linked to various health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
Sleep and obesity
Open a car door the right wayÂ
If you are sitting on the driverâ€™s side of a parked car in India and want to get out, donâ€™t open the door with your door-side (right) hand as youâ€™re intuitively prepared to. Instead, open the door with your left hand. Using the handÂ furthestÂ from the door ensures an upper-body pivot that enables you to see the street behind you and look out for traffic. It is called the â€˜Dutch reachâ€™.
If you are on the passengerâ€™s side, use your right hand. According to DutchReach.org, a safety advocacy movement,this method requires you to â€˜reach, swivel, look out and back, open slowlyâ€™. In Netherlands, it is taught as a requirement to pass a driving test.