Total 43 News Articles

  • 06 Jan
    eWellness Expert

    Lack of sleep can make your emotion go haywire

    lack of sleep

    If you feel cranky or grumpy after a night without sleep, it is because your brain’s ability to regulate emotions gets compromised by fatigue, say researchers.

    This is a bad news for adults who get less than six hours of sleep in night.

    The team from Tel Aviv University identified the neurological mechanism responsible for disturbed emotion regulation and increased anxiety due to only one night’s lack of sleep.

    The research reveals the changes sleep deprivation can impose on our ability to regulate emotions and allocate brain resources for cognitive processing.

    “Prior to our study, it was not clear what was responsible for the emotional impairments triggered by sleep loss,” said professor Talma Hendler of TAU’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine.

    The team assumed that sleep loss would intensify the processing of emotional images and thus impede brain capacity for executive functions.

    “We were actually surprised to find that it significantly impacts the processing of both neutral and emotionally-charged images,” Hendler added. “It turns out we lose our neutrality.”

    “The ability of the brain to tell what’s important is compromised. It’s as if suddenly everything is important,” she said.

     

    (psychotherapy for insomnia)

     

    For the results, the researchers kept 18 adults awake all night to take two rounds of tests while undergoing brain mapping. 

    When sleep-deprived, participants performed badly in the cases of both the neutral and the emotional images and their electrical brain responses did not reflect a highly different response to the emotional images.

    "It could be that sleep deprivation universally impairs judgment, but it is more likely that a lack of sleep causes neutral images to provoke an emotional response," the team noted.

    The team also found that participants after only one night of lack of sleep were distracted by every single image (neutral and emotional).

    "We revealed a change in the emotional specificity of Amygdala, a region of the brain associated with detection and valuation of salient cues in our environment, in the course of a cognitive task," Ms Hendler said.

    These results reveal that without sleep, the mere recognition of what is an emotional and what is a neutral event is disrupted.

    The results appeared in the When sleep-deprived, participants performed badly in the cases of both the neutral and the emotional images and their electrical brain responses did not reflect a highly different response to the emotional images.


    "It could be that sleep deprivation universally impairs judgment, but it is more likely that a lack of sleep causes neutral images to provoke an emotional response," the team noted.

    The team also found that participants after only one night of lack of sleep were distracted by every single image (neutral and emotional).

    "We revealed a change in the emotional specificity of Amygdala, a region of the brain associated with detection and valuation of salient cues in our environment, in the course of a cognitive task," Ms Hendler said.

    These results reveal that without sleep, the mere recognition of what is an emotional and what is a neutral event is disrupted.

    The results appeared in the Journal of Neuroscience..

    Image source

  • 06 Jan
    eWellness Expert

    Positive emotions promote heart-healthy behaviour

    heart generic

    WASHINGTON:  People with heart disease may benefit from maintaining positive emotions, according to a new study.

    The study tracked more than 1,000 patients with coronary heart disease over the course of five years.

    Patients who reported higher positive psychological states were more likely to be physically active, sleep better and take their heart medications and were also less likely to smoke, compared to patients with lower levels of positive states.

    "Negative emotions and depression are known to have harmful effects on health, but it is less clear how positive emotions might be health-protective," said Nancy L Sin, postdoctoral fellow in the Center for Healthy Aging and in the department of biobehavioural health at Penn State.

     

    "We found that positive emotions are associated with a range of long-term health habits, which are important for reducing the risk of future heart problems and death," Ms Sin said.

    The researchers assessed psychological well-being of participants at baseline and again at a five-year follow-up by asking the participants to rate the extent that they had felt 10 specified positive emotions, including "interested," "proud," "enthusiastic" and "inspired."

    Physical activity, sleep quality, medication adherence and alcohol and cigarette use were also measured at baseline and again five years later. Read more....

     

     

  • 06 Jan
    eWellness Expert

    How emotion effect your Brain's creativity

    Brain creativity

    Emotional expression affects the brain's creativity network, says a new brain-scanning study of jazz pianists, adding that "happy" and "sad" music evoked different neural patterns in their brains.

    The workings of neural circuits associated with creativity are significantly altered when artists are actively attempting to express emotions, the researchers report.

    "The bottom line is that emotion matters. It can't just be a binary situation in which your brain is one way when you're being creative and another way when you're not," said senior author Charles Limb from University of California-San Francisco.

    "Instead, there are greater and lesser degrees of creative states, and different versions. And emotion plays a crucially important role in these differences," he explained.

    The team focused in a brain region known as the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), which is involved in planning and monitoring behaviour.

    The researchers found that DLPFC deactivation was significantly greater when the jazz musicians improvised melodies intended to convey the emotion expressed in a "positive" image (a photograph of a woman smiling) than a "negative" image (photo of the same woman in a mildly distressed state).

    On the other hand, improvisations targeted at expressing the emotion in the negative image were associated with greater activation of the brain's reward regions
    "This indicates there may be different mechanisms for why it's pleasurable to create happy versus sad music," added first study author Malinda McPherson.


    For each musician, any brain activity data generated during these passive viewing periods, including emotional responses, were subtracted from that elicited during their musical performances.


    This allowed the researchers to determine which components of brain activity in emotional regions were strongly associated with creating the improvisations.


    Moreover, Limb said, the research team avoided biasing the musicians' performances with words like "sad" or "happy" when instructing the musicians before the experiments.

    Source

  • 02 Jan
    eWellness Expert

    10 Alternate treatment of depression

     depression

     

    Depression, you're either going through it or you may know someone who is going through depression.

    Sadly, you are in-charge of your emotions and even though friends and family may try their best to brighten up your mood, but eventually you are the boss of yourself. Getting into depression is far easier than getting out of depression. But even though depression is a serious issue, there are solutions available and today we have listed 10 treatments for depression.

    Food for happiness
    When depressed people tend to eat or lose their appetite. But eating the right food is the way to go. Try having nuts, berries, dark chocolates, tomatoes, spinach, coconut, honey, whole grains, etc to pep up your mood. These foods can increase your endorphin levels which can make you happy.

    Quit smoking
    A 2008 study that surveyed 3,000 people found that while smokers had a 6.6 per cent risk of developing lifetime frequency of major depression; it was 2.9 per cent for non-smokers. The Epidemiologic Catchment Area (ECA) survey revealed that about 70% of male habitual smokers and 80% of female habitual smokers had major depression.

    The study also established that 30% of smokers show some symptoms of depression.

    The root cause behind it is Nicotine! Acting as a stimulant it affects the release of neurotransmitters in the brain; consequently, the brain becomes so addicted to the drug that it no longer functions normally without it. After 20-30 minutes of smoking the last cigarette, nicotine withdrawal begins and this leads to anxiety, which is very closely related to depression.

    Exercise
    Researchers found patients who exercised an hour and a half to two hours per week had slightly lower depression scores, which in turn were tied to a reduced risk of re-hospitalizations and deaths related to heart problems.

    Avoid junk food
    Studies have shown that people whose diets include fried foods, processed meats, desserts and high-fat dairy have a higher chance of showing signs of depression. Besides bringing depression, junk food also makes you irritable and aggressive.

    But the study does not mean that you need to cut out junk food completely from your life. Depression, irritation and aggression creep in when you live off junk food very often. Eat junk food in moderation and strict portion control, coupled with a healthy overall eating plan, and you should be okay.

    Avoid late night and TV sessions
    Sitting in front of a computer or TV screen late into the night or leaving it on when you fall asleep could increase your chances of becoming depressed, according to a study by U.S. scientists.

    "The good news is that people who stay up late in front of the television and computer may be able to undo some of the harmful effects just by going back to a regular light-dark cycle and minimizing their exposure to artificial light at night," said researcher Bedrosian.

    Read More....