Weekend’s Better Brain Health Breakfast # 7: Beauty-Brains, Schmoozing, Blueberries

NEW YORK - MARCH 11: (FILE PHOTO) Model Gisele...
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Are good looking people also smarter?

Would this be prove how fair the world is if on average the best looking people are also smarter? According to this one study that followed 17,419 from childhood through young  adulthood did find this exact relationship:

‘Physical attractiveness is significantly positively associated withgeneral intelligence, both with and without controls for social class, body size and health,’ says Satoshi Kanazawa, a researcher at the London School of Economics.‘The association between attractiveness and generalintelligence is also stronger among men than women.’

A similar study done in America found the same relationship between attractiveness and intelligence. The actual numbers from the British study are as follows:

The study found that in Britain, women who are physically attractive have IQ’s 11.4 points higher than the average, while handsome men have an increased IQ of 13.6 points.

The world is truly cruel and unfair :) . Not only are attractive people smarter just looking at these attractive people is good for your brains.

Schmoozing you way to more money:

Over at neuroscience marketing they report on a study that found that people are money likely to share money with people they have casually talked to compared to ones they didn’t.

..researcher Al Roth tried an interesting twist on the Ultimatum game – he had the subjects talk face-to-face before playing. Amazingly, even when the subjects were told not to discuss the game and chatted about random topics, they were far more likely to successfuly split the money. With the conversation, the percent of “fair” offers rose to 83%, and a mere 5% of the games resulted in failure.

But you could say it is no surprise that even the minor acquaintance of a person over a quick conversation alters how much we are likely to share with them – be it money or food. So don’t be shy talk to strangers, or someone in your office building that you see everyday but never actual struck up a conversation with.

Additionally, being social is good for your brain health.

And I wouldn’t be surprised if those beautiful and smart people are also better and more natural at schmoozing :) (by the way smiling is good for your health and the recipient of your smile)

Want to reduce your chances of high blood pressure naturally – try blueberries:

Blueberries are good for our health at many levels (including one study that indicates in could increase your longevity) but new research indicates it can also reduce blood pressure (via futurepundit). People who ate at least one serving of blueberries per week their chances of developing high blood pressure was  reduced by 10% compared to those that didn’t.

Simple advice for the week – eat some blueberries.

Picking up a stone – and what it tells us about our brain and evolution:

We have all leaned over to pick up one of the stones in front of us to throw – be it at a telephone poll or some other convenient target. What makes us choose one stone over another to throw? There is a well known illusion that if we have two objects of equal weight we ‘feel’ like the larger one is lighter. Now researchers think this illusion is fundamental to our high skill in throwing objects, which was fundamental for our hunting prowess.

“It was not just language. It was language and throwing that led to the survival of Homo sapiens, and we are now beginning to gain some understanding of how these abilities are rapidly acquired by members of our species.”

Bingham and Qin Zhu, lead author of the study and assistant professor at the University of Wyoming, Laramie, consider throwing and language in concert, because both require extremely well-coordinated timing and motor skills, which are facilitated by two uniquely developed brain structures — the cerebellum and posterior parietal cortex.

The researchers have found that perceptual biases in perception of auditory signals are important for language development and Bingham and Zhu wondered if the size-weight illusion would be important for throwing development.

Another way of stating the size-weight illusion is that for someone to perceive that two objects — one larger than the other — weigh the same, the larger object must weigh significantly more than the smaller object. Their study findings show that skilled throwers use this illusion of ‘equal felt’ heaviness to select objects that they are able to throw to the farthest, maximum distance. This, says Bingham, suggests the phenomenon is not actually an illusion but instead a “highly useful and accurate perception.”

Hence, maybe these evolved biases/illusions helped up develop language and throwing ability. Strange – but possible.

Have a healthy and fun weekend.

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