August 28, 2019

Long weekend reads: 4 ways to avoid a post-Labor Day hangover, according to a doctor

Daily Briefing

    Ben Palmer's reads

    Talk about man's best friend. Owning a dog is associated with certain markers of and behaviors related to good cardiovascular health, according to a recent study in Mayo Clinic Proceedings: Innovations, Quality & Outcomes. For the study, researchers randomly selected a group of 1,769 residents of Brno, Czech Republic, none of whom had a history of cardiovascular illness and 42% of whom owned pets. The researchers then scored them based on the American Heart Association's seven measures of heart health and compared the scores of the 24% of people who owned dogs and the 18% of people who owned other pets to the scores of those who didn't own pets. The researchers found that while pet owners scored higher than those who didn't own a pet, dog owners were more likely than both of the other groups to report sufficient physical activity, a better diet, and good glucose levels. The authors did not say that simply owning a dog helps protect from cardiovascular disease, but they hypothesized that the physical activity owning a dog requires could help.

    How to overcome your fear of turbulence. Airplane turbulence is a source of anxiety for many flyers, but airline industry veterans and mental health professionals have a few tips for how to manage it.  Rich Terry, a captain and managing director of fleet support for Delta Air Lines, said when the ride starts to get bumpy, you should remember that the pilots are in control. "No matter how scary it might feel, our pilots are in control and there is no question of structural integrity," Terry explained, adding,"Modern aircraft are developed and tested to sustain any level of conceivable turbulence." Still, if the bumpy ride makes you nervous, learn to "[e]xpect, accept, [and] allow" for what's happening, according to Martin Seif, a psychologist and co-founder of the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. Specifically, when the ride starts to get bumpy, Seif recommends getting rid of "what if" thoughts in favor of "what is" thoughts. "Stay present," he said. "Anxiety is fueled by catastrophic thoughts and is maintained by attempts to avoid it."

    Danielle Poindexter's reads

    4 ways to prevent a hangover, according to a doctor. Hangover symptoms can ruin anyone's day, so before you head to that Labor Day barbecue, here are four preventative tips from George Koob, director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. First, Koob recommends that if you're planning to drink, eat the night beforehand. "Food absorbs alcohol," Koob explains, which means the food in your stomach will prevent the alcohol from being absorbed into your bloodstream too quickly. Second, Koob advises people to drink water with alcohol, explaining that alcohol dehydrates you, and dehydration exacerbates hangover symptoms. Third, Koob recommends that consumers opt for clear liquors, which have fewer chemicals called congeners—which can make you feel ill after drinking—than dark liquors. Lastly, Koob recommends that people dial down the drinking as the evening draws to a close so as to maximize their chance of getting a good night's sleep, since alcohol can disrupt slumber—and feel free to take a nap the next day if you need it. All that said, the only surefire way to prevent a hangover is to avoid having too much to drink, Koob notes.

    No one wants to date a 'do-gooder,' research shows. Imagine you saved up $3,000 to go on your dream vacation—but when you break the exciting news to your partner, they refuse to go, saying you should donate the money to charity instead. If that response annoys you, you're not alone. According to research conducted by neuroscientist Molly Crockett, there are multiple types of so-called moral agents—and people are far more likely to prefer certain types over others when it comes to friendship or romance, Sigal Samuel writes for Vox. As Crockett explains, the person who turns down a vacation in favor of charity is likely an "extreme do-goode[r] of the consequentialist [or utilitarian] variety," or someone who believes an action is moral if it results in good consequences for as many people as possible. But deontologists, on the other hand, believe an action is moral if it's fulfilling a duty—and that includes duties toward romantic partners. Unsurprisingly, people strongly prefer to be friends or romantic partners with deontologists, whom people view as more trustworthy than consequentialists, according to Crockett's studies.

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