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Category: Human Potential

  • How does cannabis act on your brain?

    How does cannabis act on your brain?

    Marijuana is one of the most used illegal substances in the world. The custom of smoking marijuana is very ancient, dated a thousand years ago with traces dating back to the Neolithic era. Have you ever wondered, what does it really do to the human brain?
  • The Back-Fed Brain

    The Back-Fed Brain

    Francisco Nunez | | 0
    Neurofeedback is a tested science, aiding in the treatment of different neural disorders. However, systems meant for the general public and used outside labs and clinics like the one talked about here often fall below expectations.
  • Boost your creativity!

    Boost your creativity!

    Fitore Morina | | 0
    Sometimes we must be creative to solve an unusual problem. A promising natural way to enhance creativity may lie in a tyrosine-rich diet, since recent studies suggest that this could account for an increased ability of deep thinking.
  • Bears and Predictions

    Bears and Predictions

    Roland Clarke | | 0
    William James used a story about a bear to make an important point about emotions. What does this story tell us about the predictive mind?
  • The Power of Love: Could Love be a Cognitive Enhancer?

    The Power of Love: Could Love be a Cognitive Enhancer?

    Ben Rifkin | | 0
    Common beliefs hold that “Love” hinders cognitive functioning, and those in love may be looked upon as if they have developed some unfortunate brain disease that will impair their performance, and hinder their careers, or lives. But what does science say?
  • The heartbeat of a flexible mind

    The heartbeat of a flexible mind

    Matthijs de Wit | | 0
    The time interval between our heartbeats is related to both our physical and mental wellbeing, but can it also tell us something about our cognitive abilities?
  • Why stress is not so easily forgotten

    Why stress is not so easily forgotten

    Whether an embarrassing blunder, the death of a friend or a missed train to a very important appointment: we seem remember stressful situations better than normal day-to-day events. But why is this the case? Why does our stress keep haunting us?
  • When all alarms go off

    When all alarms go off

    Lisa Landman | | 0
    Everyone gets scared sometimes, but people with anxiety experience fear even when there is no direct threat around. What makes the way people typically assess dangers and the way anxious people do this so different?
  • In doubt what to decide? Ask your gut!

    In doubt what to decide? Ask your gut!

    Lisa Dielessen | | 0
    Making the right decision can be very difficult. You may have seen yourself desperately writing down all pros and cons, hoping to come to a decision. However, is this actually the best way to make such a complex decision?
  • How to be more socially mindful

    How to be more socially mindful

    Angelica van der Ploeg | | 0
    Imagine that you and a friend get offered cookies. Both of you would like a cookie, but only three are left: two chocolate chip cookies and a peanut butter cookie. You choose first, which one would you choose? Read on to find out if you are socially minded
  • Could Psychedelics Strengthen the Will?

    Could Psychedelics Strengthen the Will?

    Ben Rifkin | | 0
    Research shows psychedelics may enhance cognition, and in the long-run might enhance executive function, or what is commonly called willpower. This latter theory may be supported by their antiaddictive properties. What would you do with enhanced willpower?
  • Can sleeping make you smarter?

    Can sleeping make you smarter?

    Beate Krauss | | 0
    Before tests many people tend to reduce their amount of sleep in favor of study time. But is this method really supportive? What if we could perform even better when allowing ourselves to have some rest?
  • An ethical nootropic

    An ethical nootropic

    Markos Apostolakis | | 0
    Nootropics have been used in a variety of contexts to improve cognitive performance and provide additional alertness in long lasting activities. Smart drugs often cause a debate over their side effects but none of them has kept people from using them.
  • Does taking Ritalin make you smarter?

    Does taking Ritalin make you smarter?

    Fréderique Arntz | | 0
    Could Ritalin be the new smart pill? Under college students the notion that taking Ritalin leads to better exam results is popular! Read this blog to find out whether this is true and if Ritalin actually increases learning and thus academic performance.
  • Vagus nerve can improve your social life

    Vagus nerve can improve your social life

    Alexandra Loseva | | 1
    How do we understand what other people feel? Somehow, we can ‘read’ the emotions on faces of other people, some easy, some hard. Not all people can understand this nonverbal language. Can we help them improve this ability with a novel brain stimulation?
  • Moving to music can change your brain

    Moving to music can change your brain

    Music is closely tied to movement, not only in our experience but also in the brain. Only, what actually happens when we move to music? A new study sheds some light on this by showing changes in the brain after learning a new movement to music.
  • Can Bodhi-Tree leaves stop a summer storm?

    Can Bodhi-Tree leaves stop a summer storm?

    Marius Markmann | | 0
    Meditation has long been considered a method used to detach from the world and oneself. In contrast, ADHD is understood as the inability to detach from all kind of influences. A recent study has now investigated if meditation could help people with ADHD.
  • Language switchers are brain trainers

    Language switchers are brain trainers

    Olga Boer | | 0
    If you can read this while English is not your mother tongue, then you are part of the increasing amount of bilinguals in the world. But did you know that speaking multiple languages can improve your executive functioning skills?
  • Work out while resting

    Work out while resting

    Marc Werner, Jan Rabeneck | | 0
    Relaxing on the couch and playing video games, or just using the smartphone, is far more enjoyable after a hard working day than doing fitness activities. But there may be a new trend: Exergames, can this help you get rid of motivational problems?
  • Tint your performance

    Tint your performance

    Fabienne Reher | | 0
    White walls, grey desks, black monitors and dark blue carpets - If that’s the description of your workplace you should prick up your ears - and open your eyes! How about tinting your room and equally “tint” your working performance to reach higher levels?
  • Brain for breakfast

    Brain for breakfast

    Lisa Marie Kraushaar | | 0
    Glucose is known as a type of sugar which functions for the brain as fuel. You can deliver glucose with a rich breakfast. But how can eating breakfast possibly help us to boost our brain?
  • In praise of uncertainty

    In praise of uncertainty

    Research suggests we should embrace uncertainty and seek challenges wherever possible in order to improve mental capabilities and prevent cognitive decline. That does not fit with the zeitgeist: uncertainty makes nervous and anxious. Here's the plan.
  • Brains? Consider the gut!

    Brains? Consider the gut!

    Hippocrates once said “All disease begins in the gut”. Recent studies suggest even disorders seen as psychological or neurological may actually be related to your gut. Here’s why we should pay more attention to the link between the gut and the brain.
  • The beats that help you multitasking

    The beats that help you multitasking

    Many people say that listening to binaural beats (auditory illusions) help them to concentrate and be more focused. A new study tested whether binaural beats makes you better in multitasking. What is the mechanism behind this phenomenon?
  • But first, coffee.

    But first, coffee.

    Pauline van der Wel | | 1
    Although findings on the cognitive enhancing properties of caffeine are mixed, under certain conditions consuming caffeine may be beneficial on the short- and long-term. I here provide you with 3 good reasons to drink coffee from a cognitive perspective.
  • A food supplement to influence social behavior?!

    A food supplement to influence social behavior?!

    Tryptophan (TRP) is one of the most investigated amino-acids and can increase serotonin levels in the brain. For this, numerous studies have investigated the influence of TRP administration on social behavior, which we review in our recent publication.
  • Eat nuts to not go nuts!

    Eat nuts to not go nuts!

    Janna Kullmann | | 0
    Nuts are well known for its healthy fats, nutrients and vitamins but how can eating nuts possibly help us to boost our memory functions and recover memory ability in case of dementia?
  • They might be giants

    They might be giants

    Christian Funke | | 0
    A vast number of high protein foods, which promise to support the muscle growth, are very common among bodybuilders. But could those dietary supplements even have the potential to influence the brain function?
  • How a staring contest with your dog can improve your human-dog-bond

    How a staring contest with your dog can improve your human-dog-bond

    Miriam Wild | | 1
    Human-dog-bonds sometimes seem to be comparable to human relationships. A reason for this could be that dogs copy our human communication style, which makes us even love them more. So what exactly do they do and how can you improve your bond with your dog?
  • Why do we conform?

    Why do we conform?

    Conformity is commonly explained in terms of social pressure. But social factors may not be necessary to produce conformity: people may simply confuse memories of own behavior with the behavior of others, and then reproduce mental “averages" thereof.
  • Running makes you smart, period.

    Running makes you smart, period.

    Several mechanisms make sure the right substances in your brain are released when you are running, synergizing to improve for instance memory performance. But how does this work?
  • Beat your way to better concentration

    Beat your way to better concentration

    Hayley Barone | | 0
    Some people swear listening to music while studying or working helps them focus better; others say music just serves as a distraction. What if there were a special type of music that would increase everyone’s productivity? Enter binaural beats.
  • The fountain of Youth: Videogames!

    The fountain of Youth: Videogames!

    Vera Williams | | 0
    Our brain’s cognitive capacity deteriorates from the onset of 20 years of age. But no fear, this decline can be countered. The cure possibly lies within an unexpected field: videogames.
  • Eating your way out to longevity and well-being

    Eating your way out to longevity and well-being

    Within twenty years Europe will face a situation where the largest population cohort will be those over the age of 65. Can food supplementations slow down, and (partially) compensate for the negative consequences associated with getting older?
  • Improved learning without extra effort?

    Improved learning without extra effort?

    Mattanja Pauw, Maxim Allaart | | 3
    The popularity of online lectures increases daily but is it as effective as we think? Students easily lose track when there is no interaction. Frequent testing of students has shown to improve retention of information.
  • Better food – better prisoners?

    Better food – better prisoners?

    Kim Nolte | | 0
    How enhanced nutrition influences behavior. By enhancing the diet of prisoners, a more sociable behavior may be implemented.
  • How to not be anthropomorphized

    How to not be anthropomorphized

    If I anthropomorphize an avatar after a simple chat, how far does this anthropomorphism stretch? And, how can you avoid being victimized by my anthropomophisation-beam, if at all?
  • Prenatal music as neurogenesis enhancer

    Prenatal music as neurogenesis enhancer

    Elisabetta Orsini | | 0
    The ability to respond and to enjoy music seems to be innate. Could music have an impact on the cognitive development and consequently on the cognitive functions in developing infants?
  • How to run away from your problems

    How to run away from your problems

    The runner finds his exercise fun and relaxing, yet the body’s stress response is activated.This makes sense from an evolutionary perspective: running after your meal or running to not become one is stressful. How can it be that the runner isn't stressed?
  • Do you want to improve your brain? Become a hipster.

    Do you want to improve your brain? Become a hipster.

    Batsheva Mannheim | | 0
    We know that food influences our health and cognitive functioning. But what is surprising, is that the compound with the worst reputation, fat, might actually be able to improve your cognitive functions!
  • Smells like memory

    Smells like memory

    Daniel Hauber | | 0
    Sleep is essential for saving new memories. Scientists found a natural way to enhance declarative memory consolidation during sleep using odor cues. But how is it working?
  • Spice up your cognition with curcumin

    Spice up your cognition with curcumin

    Iliana Samara | | 0
    Being able to stay focused and having a strong memory is what mostly all students wish for. So, is there a way to fulfill that wish easily with just a few tweaks to our culinary habits?
  • Can a mouse use a joystick?

    Can a mouse use a joystick?

    Emine Gurbuz | | 0
    Researchers in New Zealand designed a paradigm in which a mouse used a joystick to get reward. Surprisingly, mice were just as good as humans. How can this give insight in psychiatric disorders such as Parkinson’s Disease and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder?
  • Do you see what you do?

    Do you see what you do?

    Evert Boonstra | | 0
    The distinction between action and perception is not as sharp as you might think, which does not bode well for explanatory power of mirror neurons.
  • Combat exam anxiety and stress with Yoga

    Combat exam anxiety and stress with Yoga

    Valerie Junk | | 1
    Exam anxiety and stress can influence performance negatively. Yoga may be a solution to lower stress and improve the general and mental wellbeing.
  • Food for switching

    Food for switching

    Doing multiple things at the same time is difficult, even if you have a little more time to switch between two tasks - as some conflict arises. We recently discovered that in this case, tyrosine helps you overcome this conflict and switch faster.
  • Mediterranean diet can reduce risk on Alzheimer’s Disease

    Mediterranean diet can reduce risk on Alzheimer’s Disease

    Tamara van Donge | | 0
    Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is the most common neurodegenerative disorder in the world. It is a progressive disease which is characterized by the loss of synapses and dendrites in the cortex and hippocampus.
  • The Good Of Chocolate Cognition

    The Good Of Chocolate Cognition

    Jorinde Gerrmann | | 2
    “Anything is good if it’s made of chocolate” stated comedian Jo Brand. The popularity of chocolate is undeniable but what effect does the consumption of chocolate have on our cognition?