On a lighter note today – can viewing attractive public personalities be good for your brain?
Brad and Angelina can serve as examples for this blog piece to appeal to both sexes.
Matsunaga et al., 2008) viewing a person you judge as attractive (a favorite person) causes an increase in circulating natural killer cells (better immune system) and the peripheral dopamine levels, along with elevation in positive emotions. Additionally, there was greater activation of the medial prefrontal cortex, thalamus, hypothalamus, subcallosal gyrus, posterior cingulate cortex, superior temporal gyrus, and cerebellum versus the control condition.
To make this more clear, two videos were watched on different occasions: 1) a 4 minute video of someone the individual participant consider to be a favorite (attractive) personality (famous actresses in this study), 2) a 4 minute video of a newscaster the individual participants did not consider attractive, reporting the weather. The various blood components and brain scans were obtained under these two conditions and compared.
Presto – seeing someone attractive increased activation in numerous brain areas, and there was an increase in the immune system and peripheral dopamine levels.
Another hack for the brain brought to your friendly neuroscientist.
Who are you going to look at today to improve your health?
(idea via Neurocritic)