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The Nuance

Novel, complex, and perspective-changing experiences are undervalued parts of a satisfying life

Imagine that you’re stuck in a room by yourself, and your only entertainment is a short movie clip — played over and over again.

That was the setup for a 2015 study led by researchers in the Netherlands. For one hour, people in the study sat alone at a table…

How dopamine leads to action, and at times, addiction

Two evenly matched teams are engaged in an epic battle. The game is back and forth — as soon as one team scores, the other quickly counters. This deadlocked, even game seems to go on forever, into multiple overtimes.

Suddenly, the tide turns.

One team makes a spectacular play, their…

We need to maximize control of the virus while minimizing harm

Covid has changed the world as we know it, and virulent variants such as Delta have upended early hopes of a clearer-cut “back to normal.” Unfortunately, achieving herd immunity may now be an impossible dream, but we can limit death and disruption as we get to a new normal.


The Nuance

Immoderate approaches to eating — fueled by social media and misleading nutrition research — can put your brain and body at risk

Every year, U.S. News & World Report assembles a panel of doctors, dietitians, and other nutrition experts and asks them to rank the best overall diets for human health. This year, the Mediterranean diet topped the panel’s list — as it did in 2020 and 2019.

The Mediterranean diet is…

Optimize sleep quality, not quantity. Here’s how.

When most people think about sleep, they treat it like a simple subtraction problem. “I went to bed at 10 p.m. and woke up at 6 a.m.,” the normal thinking goes, “Eight hours passed between my bedtime and wake time, so that means I got eight hours of sleep! …

Why the pandemic has hit low-income places so hard

Throughout the pandemic, one of the hardest things to pin down has been the death rate of Covid-19. It seems simple — you just take your number of deaths and divide by cases — but in practice, we know that there are many people who are asymptomatic and will never…

A Slightly Greener Thing

Even mild cold exposure may mimic some of the metabolic benefits of exercise

Denis Blondin spends a lot of his time dunking people in cold water.

Blondin is an assistant professor at the University of Sherbrooke in Quebec. …

‘Solastalgia’ is the pain of watching the world change under your feet

Back in the early 2000s, Australia was going through a brutal heat wave and a persistent drought. The fierce temperatures were changing the landscape and the fabric of daily life: crops and flowers wouldn’t grow, coral reefs were dying off, and the government was rationing water.

The philosopher Glenn Albrecht…

From the placebo effect to neuron generation, your gray matter has surprising superpowers

There’s a lot about the brain we still don’t know. In fact, just this week neuroscientists discovered what they’re calling “zombie” brain cells, which only turn on after you die. …

Hint: It’s not just the efficacy numbers

The debate over Covid-19 boosters continues to heat up. The demand is enormous — about 1 million Americans have already received boosters, many by lying about being immunosuppressed or prior vaccination. …


Your life, sourced by science. A publication from Medium about health and wellness.

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