Category Archives: Science And Society

Encouraging Diet News

At least for me.

It’s long been known that caloric restriction is one means of extending lifespan in lower mammals (e.g., lab rats) and presumably humans as well. It’s a tough diet to maintain, though, since most who try it are perpetually hungry. Now there’s evidence that most of the benefits can be attained by periodic fasting (alternate days), allowing a normal dietary intake, but at more irregular intervals.

It makes sense that, like many features of civilized (in the literal sense, meaning cities and civilization) lifestyles, regular meals are unhealthy for us, since our ancestors were probably more in a “go hungry until you can chase down the next mastodon, then feast” mode, and evolutionarily adapted to it. So we need to consider not just what we eat (more paleolithic foods, like meat, nuts, fruits and berries and less or no grain) but when we eat it as well, if we want to do what our bodies (are still) evolved to do.

This is good news for me because I’ll often go long periods without eating, just because I get busy, and have no need for regularity to my meals. Unfortunately, many (particularly hypoglycemic types) start to feel bad if they go more than a few hours without food. Of course, it’s possible that if they change their diets and habit, that they could get used to it as well.

But Do They Ask For Directions?

This is interesting (and no doubt confounding to those who continue to deny that homosexuality is inborn). Gay men tend to read maps more like women.

Gay men employ the same strategies for navigating as women – using landmarks to find their way around – a new study suggests.

But they also use the strategies typically used by straight men, such as using compass directions and distances. In contrast, gay women read maps just like straight women, reveals the study of 80 heterosexual and homosexual men and women.

Don’t tell the faculty at Harvard–Nancy Hopkins might have to hie to her fainting couch again.