The Science Behind Acupuncture
While many practices in alternative medicine are slowly but surely making their way into the mainstream, acupuncture is one that still produces skeptical eyebrow raises.
What's the Latest Development?
Acupuncture has been a popular medical treatment for 3,000 years but just how it works is difficult to explain using the Western medical lexicon. One idea called 'gate control theory' says acupuncture needles stimulate large nerve fibers to inhibit signals from smaller fibers that are responsible for feelings of pain. Another explanation has to do with the therapeutic benefits of acupuncture. "Just as a mother calms a child through her physical presence, having another human being exert a well-intentioned touch may also do a lot to alleviate pain."
What's the Big Idea?
As acupuncture is increasingly accepted as an alternative medical treatment, more people seek to articulate how the procedure reduces pain, which it has been documented to do over and over again. Dr. Josephine Briggs, director of the National Institute of Health's alternative medicine department says the Western medical lexicon may simply be ill-suited to explain how the procedure works. That many positive effects of acupuncture are felt in sham treatment, when toothpicks are used in place of needles, suggests the ritual of the treatment is as important as the treatment itself.
Antimicrobial resistance is growing worldwide, rendering many "work horse" medicines ineffective. Without intervention, drug-resistant pathogens could lead to millions of deaths by 2050. Thankfully, companies like Pfizer are taking action.
- Antimicrobial-resistant pathogens are one of the largest threats to global health today.
- As we get older, our immune systems age, increasing our risk of life threatening infections. Without reliable antibiotics, life expectancy could decline for the first time in modern history.
- If antibiotics become ineffective, common infections could result in hospitalization or even death. Life-saving interventions like cancer treatments and organ transplantation would become more difficult, more often resulting in death. Routine procedures would become hard to perform.
- Without intervention, resistant pathogens could result in 10 million annual deaths by 2050.
- By taking a multi-faceted approach—inclusive of adherence to good stewardship, surveillance and responsible manufacturing practices, as well as an emphasis on prevention and treatment—companies like Pfizer are fighting to help curb the spread.
No, the Syrian civil war is not over. But it might be soon. Time for a recap
- The War in Syria has dropped off the radar, but it's not over (yet)
- This 1-minute video shows how the fronts have moved – and stabilised – over the past 22 months
- Watching this video may leave you both better informed, and slightly queasy: does war need a generic rock soundtrack?
Sarco assisted suicide pods come in three different styles, and allow you to die quickly and painlessly. They're even quite beautiful to look at.
Death: it happens to everyone (except, apparently, Keanu Reeves). But while the impoverished and lower-class people of the world die in the same ol' ways—cancer, heart disease, and so forth—the upper classes can choose hip and cool new ways to die. Now, there's an assisted-suicide pod so chic and so stylin' that peeps (young people still say peeps, right?) are calling it the "Tesla" of death... it's called... the Sarco!
Entrepreneur and author Andrew Horn shares his rules for becoming an assured conversationalist.
- To avoid basing action on external validation, you need to find your "authentic voice" and use it.
- Finding your voice requires asking the right questions of yourself.
- There are 3-5 questions that you would generally want to ask people you are talking to.
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