Ironically enough the topic that I think I will remember the most is memory. I think the process of how the brain stores information is really interesting. I never really acknowledged the difference between short and long term memory; I always just thought of memory as one general concept but it has much more depth than that. Everyone is always trying to remember things throughout their life and knowing how to to maximize your memory is important. It is very useful to know how to make information easier to remember with tactics such as chunking and using mnemonic devices. The other thing about memory that I think is really cool is the amount of space the brain has to store long term memory. It pretty much has unlimited space for storage even though we aren't conscience of all of it. The uncertainties of memory also make it a very intriguing topic and I look forward to hearing more about it as research continues to investigate the mysteries of memory such as where in the brain all of it is stored. Diseases such as dementia leave scientists and doctors baffled and we don't know much about how and why this terrifying transformation of the brain takes place.
gaffa017: April 2012 Archives
There was a story on 60 minutes tonight discussing how sugar is having a negative impact on our society. The story started out talking about the health issues that come along with too much sugar consumption. These included heart disease and diabetes which are all increasing among Americans. Is it a matter of simply not consuming sugar anymore? That sounds a lot easier than it actually is though. In studies that look at sugar's effect on the brain participants were given sugar while having their brain scanned in an fMRI machine. As soon as the sugar touched the tongue of the participant, the brain's reward system activated and dopamine was released. This is the same process that happens when somebody uses drugs such as cocaine. The scientists conducting this study said that they believed that sugar was just as addicting as cocaine. Interestingly enough you can even build up tolerance to sugar just like other drugs causing people to consume more sugar to get the same affects as before. Sugar may not be as dangerous as cocaine in the short run, but as people continue to consume it in large quantities, the health of millions of Americans could be at risk.