We criminalize drug addicts in this country. To Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, that would be equivalent to putting someone with Parkinson’s in jail. Drug addiction is a disease that changes the chemistry of your brain, and makes you unable to kick the cravings. It all stems from dopamine, a powerful drug that controls pleasure and leads you to make decisions that aren’t truly benefitting your body.
Volkow walks us through the reasons that different drugs trigger addictions and why certain people are more prone to addiction than others. It’s not only about genetics- nurture plays a key role in making someone vulnerable to the disease.
She also launches into a discussion on the human’s propensity for food addictions, a relationship more complex than that of drugs. Is it possible to transfer a love of chocolate to a desire for lettuce and running? It’s more complicated than you think.
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Cosmologists propose a groundbreaking model of the universe using string theory.
- A new paper uses string theory to propose a new model of the universe.
- The researchers think our universe may be riding a bubble expanded by dark energy.
- All matter in the universe may exist in strings that reach into another dimension.
Evolution doesn't clean up after itself very well.
- An evolutionary biologist got people swapping ideas about our lingering vestigia.
- Basically, this is the stuff that served some evolutionary purpose at some point, but now is kind of, well, extra.
- Here are the six traits that inaugurated the fun.
For Damien Echols, tattoos are part of his existential armor.
- In prison Damien Echols was known by his number SK931, not his name, and had his hair sheared off. Stripped of his identity, the only thing he had left was his skin.
- This is why he began tattooing things that are meaningful to him — to carry a "suit of armor" made up the images of the people and things that have significance to him, from his friends to talismans.
- Echols believes that all places are imbued with divinity: "If you interact with New York City as if there's an intelligence behind... then it will behave towards you the same way.".
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