New study suggests placebo might be as powerful as psychedelics

New study suggests the placebo effect can be as powerful as microdosing LSD.

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  • New research from Imperial College London investigated the psychological effects of microdosing LSD in 191 volunteers.
  • While microdosers experienced beneficial mental health effects, the placebo group performed statistically similar to those who took LSD.
  • Researchers believe the expectation of a trip could produce some of the same sensations as actually ingesting psychedelics.
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Your genetics influence how resilient you are to the cold

What makes some people more likely to shiver than others?

KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP via Getty Images

Some people just aren't bothered by the cold, no matter how low the temperature dips. And the reason for this may be in a person's genes.

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Harvard study finds perfect blend of fruits and vegetables to lower risk of death

Eating veggies is good for you. Now we can stop debating how much we should eat.

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  • A massive new study confirms that five servings of fruit and veggies a day can lower the risk of death.
  • The maximum benefit is found at two servings of fruit and three of veggies—anything more offers no extra benefit according to the researchers.
  • Not all fruits and veggies are equal. Leafy greens are better for you than starchy corn and potatoes.
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Cephalopod aces 'marshmallow test' designed for eager children

The famous cognition test was reworked for cuttlefish. They did better than expected.

The common cuttlefish

Credit: Hans Hillewaert via Wikicommons
Surprising Science
  • Scientists recently ran the Stanford marshmallow experiment on cuttlefish and found they were pretty good at it.
  • The test subjects could wait up to two minutes for a better tasting treat.
  • The study suggests cuttlefish are smarter than you think but isn't the final word on how bright they are.
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If we do find alien life, what kind will it be?

Three lines of evidence point to the idea of complex, multicellular alien life being a wild goose chase. But are we clever enough to know?

A scene from the 1996 Tim Burton film "Mars Attacks!"

Credit: "Mars Attacks!" / Warner Bros
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  • Everyone wants to know if there is alien life in the universe, but Earth may give us clues that if it exists it may not be the civilization-building kind.
  • Most of Earth's history shows life that is single-celled. That doesn't mean it was simple, though. Stunning molecular machines were being evolved by those tiny critters.
  • What's in a planet's atmosphere may also determine what evolution can produce. Is there a habitable zone for complex life that's much smaller than what's allowed for microbes?
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Researchers read centuries-old sealed letter without ever opening it

The key? A computational flattening algorithm.

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Culture & Religion

An international team of scholars has read an unopened letter from early modern Europe — without breaking its seal or damaging it in any way — using an automated computational flattening algorithm.

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