Posts made in November 2019

Winning by a whisker: The 2019 Beard and Moustache Championships

December 5, 2019

Chicago may be known as the Windy City, but none of the contestants had a hair out of place at the National Beard and Moustache Championships—held at the 350 Brewery’s Insanity Factory on November 8 and 9, Metro (UK) reported.

Everybody has a talent, and for the hirsute competitors who look forward to this event each year, it’s growing beards and moustaches.

But there’s somebody else who wouldn’t go 12 months without a chance to see this contest: Greg Anderson, 44, a photographer from Las Vegas, has been attending the event for the past seven years. He told the Metro that, for everyone who shows up, “ It’s a two-day party.”

This year, he says he captured the beards and ‘staches on film again—some of which measured longer than 24 inches (and probably took some knowledge of structural dynamics to d

John Banks working partly on the top and partly on the bottom.(Picture by Greg Anderson of Caters News)

esign and style).

Anderson told the news outlet, ‘It’s a personal project that I love doing every year because of all of the people involved, some of which I’ve known now since the first event I shot in New Orleans, Louisiana in 2013. ‘All of the character, designs, and styles never disappoint and it’s the most fun I have all year on a photoshoot.’

Some of the ways in which contestants style their long facial hair includes swirly patterns, windmills, and stars. Others put items like leaves and flowers in the beards to adhere to a theme.

‘The crazier the design the better, in my book,’ says Anderson. ‘I love all of the outrageous styles the most, they’re kind of like my children, I can’t pick favorites

Some of the categories in the show include Design Beard, Business Beard, Brewers Beard, Veterans Beard, Mr. Moustache, and 5 O’Clock Shadow. Each is judged differently, with the style and mode of preparation allowed changing each time. For example, for the Moustache Freestyle round, styling aids like gel and hairspray are allowed, but additional structural materials such as wire, rope, and lumber are not permitted.

According to the Metro’s report, “The winners from this year have been announced and include men and women – with some women beating the more-traditional beard-having men with their creative styles. Although it is a competition, there are also meet and greets, and the whole thing is ‘a massive jolly’ for people who take pride in their growing capabilities.”

Research contact: @MetroUK

Fruit that doesn’t spoil? Extending shelf life is a key tactic in the battle against food waste—and a startup is on the front lines

December 2, 2019

Imagine avocados that never go bad. To Aidan Mouat, CEO of Hazel Technologies, that’s not so far-fetched, The Chicago Tribune reports.

His company makes a product that extends the shelf life of all sorts of produce — bananas, cherries, pears, broccoli—by slowing the chemical process that causes decay.

Now, some of the world’s largest growers are using it to send their produce longer distances, or to reduce the amount that retailers throw away; and Mouat tells the Tribune that a consumer version could be next.

Indeed, as much as 40% of food produced annually in the United States, and nearly half of produce, goes uneaten, according to government estimates. While the waste happens throughout the supply chain, the vast majority of the $218 billion worth of uneaten food annually gets tossed at home or at grocery stores and restaurants, according to ReFED, a Berkeley, California-based nonprofit that seeks solutions to reduce food waste.

The average American family throws away 25% of groceries purchased, costing a family of four an estimated $1,600 annually, ReFED says. U.S. supermarkets lose $15 billion annually in unsold fruits and vegetables, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

 “I envision, in the next 18 months or so, literally selling a banana box to consumers,” Mouat said from Hazel’s growing office space at University Technology Park, a startup innovation hub on the Illinois Institute of Technology campus. “You keep it on your counter, put a (Hazel) sachet in there once a month, and you have bananas that last forever.”

Whate are those sachets? The company makes the small packs—the size of a salt or pepper packet included with takeout—that can be thrown into a box of produce to shut down the food’s response to ethylene, a chemical naturally emitted by many fruits and vegetables that triggers the loss of firmness, texture and color. The sachets continuously emit a small amount of an ethylene inhibitor, changing the atmosphere in the storage box but not the food itself.

How much Hazel can extend the shelf life depends on the type of food. For example, tests show an unripened pear gets an extra seven to 10 days after being treated with a Hazel sachet, plus an extra three to four days once ripe.

While ethylene management technology isn’t new, Hazel’s sachets are gaining fans because they are easy to use, whether in okra fields in Honduras or avocado packing houses in the United States, Mouat told the Tribune. In addition to ethylene inhibitors, the company is working on anti-microbial reactions and will soon bring to market antimicrobial liners for packages of berries, to ward off the white fuzz.

And the company also is gaining buzz and investors. Founded in 2015 by a group of Northwestern University graduate students, Hazel Technologies has raised $18 million so far, including nearly $1 million in grants from the USDA. It has 100 clients in 12 countries in North and South America.

Research contact: @chicagotribune

Republican group pummels Trump with derogatory ad: ‘What Is He Afraid Of?’

December 2, 2019

Republicans for the Rule of Law—a nonprofit group of lifelong conservative GOP members who are “dedicated to defending the institutions of our republic”— has called out President Donald Trump with a critical TV ad.

In its new 32-second clip released online November 27, The Huffington Post reports, the group questions the White House’s refusal to allow key witnesses in the Ukraine scandal to testify before Congress in the impeachment inquiry that targets Trump.

“These witnesses must testify,” the voiceover says, referring to a lineup of Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, along with White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and former National Security Adviser John Bolton.

“What is Trump afraid of?” the narrator adds.

The ad is slated to air on Fox News’ flagship morning show “Fox & Friends” for several days after Thanksgiving.

Republicans for the Rule of Law Executive Director Sarah Longwell said in a statement that the House impeachment hearings “have presented startling evidence” that Trump “abused his power, strong-arming a foreign government to interfere on his behalf in the upcoming election, and damaging national security in the process.”

“The president denies the allegations, but won’t let key administration officials― including Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, and White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney―testify to Congress,” Longwell added. “If the president did nothing wrong, what does he have to hide? If they tell the truth, what is he afraid of? Most importantly, will Republicans in Congress allow the president to simply ignore their constitutionally mandated oversight role?”

According to the HuffPost, the group last week launched a campaign that aimed to educate GOP voters―who polls have shown remain steadfast in their support of Trump―on the facts of the Ukraine scandal that prompted the impeachment inquiry.

Research contact: @HuffPost

Write a note in Trump’s distinctive handwriting with this font generator

November 27, 2019

In reaction to Ambassador Gordon Sondland’s damning public testimony on November 20 in the impeachment inquiry—and amid growing evidence of a quid pro quo—President Donald Trump talked to a press gaggle outside the White House the next day. During that press conference, the president referred frequently to a list of talking points that he had handwritten in advance on Air Force One letterhead, according to a report by Lifehacker.

“I WANT NOTHING I WANT NOTHING,” one page read. “I WANT NO QUID PRO. TELL ZELENSKY TO DO THE RIGHT THING. THIS IS THE FINAL WORD FROM THE PRES OF THE U.S.”

Now that list has gone viral—not only because of the content, but mainly because of the all-caps list written in bold Sharpie, in Trump’s distinctive style.

In case you want to write like Trump (and who doesn’t?)—or send a nice and unforgettable card for the holidays—here’s a tiny hack: You can now write your own note in Trump’s style, using this website.

Lifehacker advises: Just write your note, click “Download the poster,” and you will have your very own Trump-memo, signed as Trump did with his.

Jones Knowles Ritchie, the global design agency that created the website, also produced a download function, so you can download Trump’s handwriting as a font and use it whenever you like—in emails, in Word documents … the options are endless.

Research contact: @lifehacker

‘A distinctly American phenomenon’: Our workers die younger than those in other wealthy nations

November 27, 2019

Americans work hard and die young, according to findings of a study conducted at Virginia Commonwealth University.  In fact, the engine that powers the world’s most potent economy is succumbing at an alarming pace—a “distinctly American phenomenon’’ with no easily discernible cause or simple solution, USA Today reported on November 26.

Specifically, researchers determined that mortality rates for U.S. adults ages 25-64 continue to increase—driving down the general population’s life expectancy for the three consecutive years following 2014.

The report, Life Expectancy and Mortality Rates in the United States, 1959-2017,’’ was published on November 26  in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

According to USA Today, it paints a bleak picture of a workforce plagued by drug overdoses, suicides, and organ-system diseases while grappling with economic stresses.

“This looks like an excellent paper—just what we needed to help unravel the overall decline in life expectancy in the United States’’ said Eileen Crimmins, the AARP Professor of Gerontology at the University of California-Leonard Davis. She’s who’s an expert on the link between health and socioeconomic factors.

In a trend that cuts across racial and ethnic boundaries, America has the worst midlife mortality rate among 17 high-income countries despite leading the world in per-capita spending on health care.

And while life expectancy in those other industrialized nations continues to inch up, ours has been going in the opposite direction—decreasing from a peak of 78.9 years in 2014 to 78.6 in 2017, the last year covered by the report.

By comparison, the news outlet reports, according to the Peterson-Kaiser Health System Tracker, the average longevity in similar countries is 82.2 years. Japan’s is 84.1; France’s, 82.4;and Canada’s, 81.9. They left the United States behind in the 1980s and increased the distance as the rate of progress in this country diminished and eventually halted in 2011.

Steven Woolf, director emeritus of the Virginia Commonwealth University Center on Society and Health and the study’s lead author, said the reasons for the decline go well beyond the lack of universal health care in America—in contrast with those other nations—although that’s a factor.

“It would be easier if we could blame this whole trend on one problem, like guns or obesity, or the opioid epidemic—all of which distinguish [the U.S.] from the other countries,’’ Woolf told USA Today. “But we found increases in death rates across 35 causes of death.’’

They were most pronounced in the industrial Midwest, the 13 Appalachian states, and upper New England, which Woolf attributed partly to the decline in manufacturing jobs and the opioid epidemic.

Of the top 10 states with the highest number of excess deaths in the 25-64 age range —meaning deaths above projections based on U.S. mortality rates—eight were in the Rust Belt or Appalachia. Half of the excess deaths were concentrated in the latter region. The Ohio Valley—comprising Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, and Pennsylvania—accounted for one-third.

“Not only are employers more likely to see premature deaths in their workers, but also greater illness rates and greater disability, and that puts U.S. businesses at a disadvantage against businesses in other countries that have a healthier and more productive workforce,’’ Woolf said, adding that employers here are already saddled with high health care costs.

The report showed mortality rates among those younger than 25 and older than 64 have decreased. That might point a finger at the country’s dysfunctional health care system for working adults, because many in those other age groups can be covered by either the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) or Medicare.

Woolf told USA Today that he disputes that notion, saying only 10% to 20% of health outcomes can be attributed to medical care. He said the bigger culprit is a lack of social programs and support systems more common in other wealthy countries for when working families run into difficult times.

Those rough spells, often associated with a job loss, can lead to the kind of unhealthy behaviors – drug and alcohol abuse, smoking, overeating, suicide attempts—that result in what have become known as “deaths of despair.’’

“We’re making a huge mistake if we don’t step back and look at the root causes,’’ Woolf told the news oulet—ncluding a lack of educational opportunities and living wages among the likely causes. “The prescription for the country is we’ve got to help these people. And if we don’t, we’re literally going to pay with our lives.’’

Research contact: @USATODAY

From no-show to must-go: McGahn must testify to Congress, judge rules; DOJ will appeal

November 27, 2019

Former White House Counsel Don McGahn—who often spoke truth to the president, but refused to testify before the U.S. Congress after he was subpoenaed last April to do so—may yet face the music, if an appeal by the Trump administration of the ruling made on November 25 by Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson of the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia  is not successful.

The ruling that McGahn must appear before Congress comes as a disappointment to the president, who had made it no secret that he wanted to block all White House aides from appearing before the House impeachment investigators.

Indeed, Judge Jackson said that senior presidential aides must comply with congressional subpoenas and characterized the administration’s arguments to the contrary as “fiction,” The New York Times reported.

Her 120-page decision handed another lower-court victory to House Democrats in their fight to overcome Mr. Trump’s stonewalling. However, Attorney General Bill Barr already has requested a continuance so that he can appeal the case—despite the fact that the judge has stated that “absolute immunity from congressional subpoenas has no basis in law.”

She addressed the Department of Justice directly, noting that, ““When DOJ insists that Presidents can lawfully prevent their senior-level aides from responding to compelled congressional process; and that neither the federal courts nor Congress has the power to do anything about it, DOJ promotes a conception of separation-of-powers principles that gets these constitutional commands exactly backwards,” Jackson wrote. “In reality, it is a core tenet of this Nation’s founding that the powers of a monarch must be split between the branches of the government to prevent tyranny.”

According to the Times report, the judge said “the same is true even for those who worked on national security issues.”

“Presidents are not kings,” wrote Judge Jackson, adding that current and former White House officials owe their allegiance to the Constitution. “They do not have subjects, bound by loyalty or blood, whose destiny they are entitled to control.”

The ruling by Judge Jackson, who was appointed by President Barack Obama, could have broader consequences for the investigation into the Ukraine affair, the news outlet noted.

Notably, John Bolton, President Trump’s former national security adviser, has let it be known that he has significant information about the Ukraine affair at the heart of the impeachment inquiry—but is uncertain whether any congressional subpoena for his testimony would be constitutionally valid. He wants a judge to decide.

Judge Jackson’s ruling also came on the same day that another federal judge in Washington held out the possibility that more documents about the Ukraine affair could yet see the light of day, ruling that emails between the White House and the Pentagon about the freezing of military aid to Ukraine should be released under a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit.

Research contact: @nytimes

Into the light: Babies in the womb may see more than we thought

November 26, 2019

The transitions that mark the beginning and end of human life are marked by the same phenomenon: light. In fact, a new study conducted at the University of California-Berkeley has found that, eve by the second trimester—long before a baby’s eyes can see images—they can detect light.

Previously, the light-sensitive cells in the developing retina— the thin sheet of brain-like tissue at the back of the eye— were assumed to be simple” on-off switches,” presumably there to set up the 24-hour, day-night rhythms parents hope their baby will follow.

Now, with funding from the National Institutes of Health, researchers have discovered evidence that these simple cells actually talk to one another as part of an interconnected network that gives the retina more light sensitivity than once thought, and that may enhance the influence of light on behavior and brain development in unsuspected ways.

In the developing eye, perhaps 3% of ganglion cell—the cells in the retina that send messages through the optic nerve into the brain—are sensitive to light and, to date, researchers have found about six different subtypes that communicate with various places in the brain. Some talk to the suprachiasmatic nucleus to tune our internal clock to the day-night cycle. Others send signals to the area that makes our pupils constrict in bright light.

But others connect to surprising areas: the perihabenula, which regulates mood, and the amygdala, which deals with emotions.

In mice and monkeys, recent evidence suggests that these ganglion cells also talk with one another through electrical connections called gap junctions, implying much more complexity in immature rodent and primate eyes than imagined.

“Given the variety of these ganglion cells and that they project to many different parts of the brain, it makes me wonder whether they play a role in how the retina connects up to the brain,” said Marla Feller, a UC Berkeley professor of molecular and cell biology and senior author of a paper that appeared this month in the journal Current Biology. “Maybe not for visual circuits, but for non-vision behaviors. Not only the pupillary light reflex and circadian rhythms, but possibly explaining problems like light-induced migraines, or why light therapy works for depression.”

The cells, called intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs), were discovered only ten years ago, surprising those such as Feller, who had been studying the developing retina for nearly 20 years. She played a major role, along with her mentor, Carla Shatz of Stanford University, in showing that spontaneous electrical activity in the eye during development— so-called retinal waves —is critical for setting up the correct brain networks to process images later on.

“We thought they (mouse pups and the human fetus) were blind at this point in development,” said Feller. “We thought that the ganglion cells were there in the developing eye, that they are connected to the brain, but that they were not really connected to much of the rest of the retina, at that point. Now, it turns out they are connected to each other, which was a surprising thing.”

UC Berkeley graduate student Franklin Caval-Holme combined two-photon calcium imaging, whole-cell electrical recording, pharmacology, and anatomical techniques to show that the six types of ipRGCs in the newborn mouse retina link up electrically, via gap junctions, to form a retinal network that the researchers found not only detects light, but responds to the intensity of the light, which can vary nearly a billionfold.

Gap junction circuits were critical for light sensitivity in some ipRGC subtypes, but not others, providing a potential avenue to determine which ipRGC subtypes provide the signal for specific non-visual behaviors that light evokes.

“Aversion to light, which pups develop very early, is intensity-dependent,” suggesting that these neural circuits could be involved in light-aversion behavior, Caval-Holme said. “We don’t know which of these ipRGC subtypes in the neonatal retina actually contributes to the behavior, so it will be very interesting to see what role all these different subtypes have.”

The researchers also found evidence that the circuit tunes itself in a way that could adapt to the intensity of light, which probably has an important role in development, Feller said.

“In the past, people demonstrated that these light-sensitive cells are important for things like the development of the blood vessels in the retina and light entrainment of circadian rhythms, but those were kind of a light on/light off response, where you need some light or no light,” she said. “This seems to argue that they are actually trying to code for many different intensities of light, encoding much more information than people had previously thought.”

Research contact: @EurekaAlert

Elon Musk claims Tesla has 200,000 orders for its Cybertruck—despite botched debut

November 26, 2019

There’s an old saying that people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. But Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, found that out the hard way: At the debut of his much-vaunted electric Cybertruck on November 21, he asked the company’s Chief of Design Franz von Holzhausen to hurl a metal ball at one of the pickup truck’s armored glass windows—supposedly strong enough to withstand bullets.

The window cracked. Then von Holzhausen lobbed a ball at another side window—hoping for better results—and it shattered, too.

“Oh my f****** god,” Musk said after the windows smashed. “Well, maybe that was a little too hard.”

According to a report by Yahoo Finance, the Tesla boss later blamed the order in which the demo took place for the mishap. Before tossing the metal balls, von Halzhauzen used a sledgehammer on the side doors of the truck—and didn’t leave a dent.

“Sledgehammer impact on door cracked base of glass, which is why steel ball didn’t bounce off,” Musk tweeted. “Should have done steel ball on window, *then* sledgehammer the door. Next time.”

Musk also explained the reason for the unusual angular design of the Cybertruck— claiming that current auto manufacturing technology is not capable of bending the ultra-hard material. The vehicle looks like a big metallic trapezoid and has a starting price of $39,900.

“New manufacturing methods are certainly needed, but then I’m confident it will actually cost less, because of its simplicity and lower part count,” he tweeted.

The space-age design has proved divisive —but received praise from Blade Runner Artistic Director Syd Mead, Business Insider reported. The cinema great described it as “stylistically breathtaking”.

During the truck’s unveiling, Musk said: “Trucks have been the same for like 100 years. We need something different.”

And buyers seem to agree. Since the embarrassing rollout, Tesla has received nearly 200,000 “orders” for its Cybertruck, Musk claims.

However, that might be optimistic: According to a story on CNBC, A prospective Cybertruck owner must pay Tesla a refundable, $100 “preorder fee.” In his boastful tweet on Saturday, Musk conflated orders with preorders, which are distinct from a final commitments to purchase the Cybertruck.

On Saturday, November 23, the CEO tweeted: “146k Cybertruck orders so far, with 42% choosing dual, 41% tri & 17% single motor.”

No matter the take rate, preorders for the Cybertruck, CNBC notes, are one indication that Tesla’s marketing game remains strong as ever.

“We threw wrenches, we threw everything even literally the kitchen sink at the glass and it didn’t break. For some weird reason, it broke now,” a humorous Musk said at the event. “I don’t know why. We will fix it in post.”

The stunt helped make the Cybertruck the subject of memes and media coverage around the world.

Research contact: @YahooFinance

Giuliani henchman is ready to testify that Nunes aides axed Ukraine trip to avoid tipping off Schiff

November 26, 2019

The dominoes are falling: Lev Parnas, who collaborated with President Donald Trump‘s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani in his efforts to find dirt on 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has offered to testify before the House Intelligence Committee as part of the impeachment inquiry.

Parnas says he is prepared to bear witness that aides to Representative Devin Nunes (R-California.)—who is ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, which is conducting the impeachment inquiry—dropped a planned trip to Ukraine to obtain dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden in order to avoid alerting House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-California).

Specifically, CNBC reported on November 24 that Lev Parnas plans to tell committee members that aides to Nunes planned to meet with two Ukrainian prosecutors in an effort to obtain evidence to aid Trump’s reelection bid, but abandoned the efforts once they realized that Schiff’s staff would be alerted to the trip.

The offices of Nunes and Schiff did not immediately return requests for comment on Sunday evening, November 24, The Hill reported—noting that Parnas’s planned testimony, if accurate, would implicate Nunes’s staff in the president and Giuliani’s efforts to push Ukrainian officials to open a politically charged investigations into Biden.

Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee have argued that the president’s efforts presented a clear case that he was attempting to solicit foreign interference in a U.S. election, while also allegedly tying up military aid to the country over the issue.

Joseph Bondy, Parnas’s attorney, told CNBC that he hopes the committee will allow his client to testify. Parnas and a fellow Giuliani associate were recently arrested at Dulles International Airport and charged with campaign finance violations.

His client, Bondy told CNBC, wishes to provide “truthful and important information that is in furtherance of justice.”

Research contact: @thehill

Excerpt from ‘Brain Food’: Comparing brains on different diets

November 25, 2019

We all have heard the expression, food for thought, and many of us are aware that our diets may influence our cognitive abilities. Now, in her  book,  Brain Food: The Surprising Science of Eating for Cognitive Power, due out in paperback on December 31,  Lisa Mosconi—a neuroscientist and integrative nutritionist, and the associate director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York— writes about the dietary needs of the brain, and about approaching cognitive health through nutrition.

In an excerpt from Mosconi’s manuscript featured on the CBS News weekly program, Sunday Morning, the author compares two brains on different diets (see exhibit above): the Mediterranean diet versus the Western diet.

The figure shows the MRI scans of two healthy, dementia-free people who follow  very different diets. Let’s check out the differences between them.

 To the left (above), is the brain of a 52-year-old woman who has been on a Mediterranean-style diet most of her life. Not being a neuroscientist, you might not be able to recognize this at first glance, but, according to Mosconi, “Her brain looks great. In fact, that’s a picture of exactly how you want your brain to look when you are 52.”

First of all, her brain takes up most of the space inside the skull (the white ribbon that surrounds the brain in the figure). The ventricles, those little butterfly shaped fissures in the middle of the brain, are small and compact. The hippocampus (the memory center of the brain) is well-rounded and in close contact with the surrounding tissues.

In comparison, the scan on the right shows the brain of a slightly younger 50-year-old woman who has been eating a Western-style diet for many years. This means fast foods, processed meats, dairy, refined sweets, and sodas.

The arrows point to brain atrophy, or shrinkage—an indicator of neuronal loss. As the brain loses neurons, the space is replaced by fluids, which show up as black on an MRI.

As you can see, there are more black areas present in the brain that has been fed a typical Western diet than in the brain that consumed a Mediterranean diet. The butterfly-shaped ventricles are larger in the brain to the right, which results from the brain shrinking. The hippocampus itself is surrounded by fluid (in black), as is the temporal lobe, another region directly involved in memory formation. These are all signs of accelerated aging and increased risk of future dementia.

Of course, not all people on the Mediterranean diet [which features fruit, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and fish]  have perfectly healthy brains, and not all people who eat fast food have brains that are deteriorating. But on average, people who follow a Mediterranean diet seem to have overall fitter brains than those on less healthy diets, regardless of whether or not they carry genetic risk factors for dementia.

Findings such as these have led to a true and proper paradigm shift in medical practice, as an increasing number of experts now see diet as being as important to mental health as it is to physical health. In particular, there is mounting evidence that adopting a brain-healthy diet is key to maintaining optimal cognitive capacities well into old age, therefore delaying, or, even better, preventing the appearance of debilitating diseases like Alzheimer’s. At the same time, eating well and leading a healthy lifestyle have the added benefits of reducing the risk and severity of other medical illnesses that also affect the brain, such as heart disease, diabetes, and various metabolic disorders.

In the end, science is teaching us that our brain health is highly dependent on the food choices we make. Though genetics can predispose us to many forms of disease, we should also give ourselves a little more credit when it comes to controlling the health of our brains (and bodies). What we all can and should do is be sure to take care of the brains we’ve been so gracefully given by nourishing them the best ways possible, which will naturally extend our chances of a longer, healthier life.

Taken from: “Brain Food: The Surprising Science of Eating for Cognitive Power” by Lisa Mosconi, Ph.D. (Avery), in hardcover, trade paperback, eBook and audio formats, available via Amazon.

Research contact: @CBS News