Having Sex Benefits Your Health

Source: Medical News Today, Apr 2017

Improves immunity

Participating in sex one to two times per week appears to be the optimum frequency to boost the immune system, according to research published in Psychological Reports.

Good for the heart

A study published in the American Journal of Cardiology, involving men in their 50s, suggested that men who have sex at least twice per week have a 45 percent reduced risk of heart disease, compared with men who have sex less frequently.

Lowers blood pressure

the act of hugging can help a person to maintain a healthy blood pressure.

Relieves pain

In individuals with a migraine, 60 percent of people reported an improvement in pain after sexual activity, while 37 percent of people with a cluster headache reported an improvement.

The University of Munster researchers explain that sex triggering the release of endorphins is the mechanism behind the pain relief. Endorphins are the body’s natural painkillers and are released through the central nervous system, which can reduce or eliminate pain the experienced with a headache.

Reduces the risk of prostate cancer

Research led by Michael Leitzmann, from the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, MD, and published in JAMA, discovered that men who ejaculated 21 times per month or more were a third less likely to develop prostate cancer than men who ejaculated between four and seven times per month.

Improves sleep

During sex and orgasm, a cocktail of chemicals are released in the brain, which includes oxytocin, dopamine, and a rush of endorphins. Oxytocin, also known as the “cuddle hormone,” facilitates closeness and bonding, and it surges during sex and orgasm in both men and women.

After orgasm, it is thought that the effect of oxytocin, combined with the release of the hormone prolactin (which is linked to the feeling of satiety and relaxation), makes you feel sleepy.

Relieves stress

A study published in Biological Psychology found that people who engaged in penetrative sex experienced lower stress-related blood pressure when public speaking than individuals who had masturbated or had non-coital sex. Participants in the study who abstained from sex had the highest blood pressure levels triggered by stress.

Boosts brain power

Research published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior suggests that frequent sex may improve women’s memory. Results from a computerized word-memory task found that women who had penetrative sex had better memory recognition of abstract words.

Thinking about love activates long-term perspective and global processing, which promotes creative thinking and interferes with analytical thinking. However, in contrast, thinking about sex triggers short-term perspective and local processing, which then promotes analytical thinking and interferes with creativity.

Increases lifespan

A 25-year study published in The Gerontologist determined that in men, frequent intercourse was a significant predictor of longevity, whereas in women, those who reported past enjoyment of sex lived longer.

Boosts self-esteem

having frequent satisfying sex may improve emotional wellness.

 

Starting First Jobs

Source: Fast Company, May 2017

BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS TAKES WORK

ASKING QUESTIONS IS NOT A SIGN OF WEAKNESS

often the smartest move you can make in a new job is to ask a question. After all, there are only two options when faced with a situation that overwhelms or confuses you, as Huhman points out: “Pretend like you know what you’re doing and hope you don’t mess up—although, chances are you will,” she says, “or ask questions and get clarifications. The second option means admitting your limitations, but it provides you the chance to learn and avoid costly mistakes.”

THE LEARNING ISN’T OVER

“Each company has their own way of doing things, so be prepared to adapt to new processes and ways of working through problems.”

TIMING IS OUT OF YOUR CONTROL

“No matter how quickly you complete your tasks, there will be delays that are beyond your control.” The fact that your time—when you’re on the clock—is out of your control can be frustrating, “but understand that all you can do is try your hardest to meet your own deadlines.”

YOU WON’T BE GETTING A “REPORT CARD”

unless you specifically ask, your boss may not be as forthright with feedback as your professors were with your test scores

if you do find an employer who regularly sits down with you to discuss progress, count yourself lucky. It could take months, or even a year, before you receive input or recognition from your boss.”

PROFESSIONALISM IS EVERYTHING

 

 

Moral Consequences of Economic Growth

Source: NYTimes, Nov 2005
<original paper, 2005>

Benjamin Friedman, a professor of economics at Harvard University, in “The Moral Consequences of Economic Growth.”

Friedman argues that economic growth is essential to “greater opportunity, tolerance of diversity, social mobility, commitment to fairness and dedication to democracy.”

During times of expansion, he writes, nations tend to liberalize — increasing rights, reducing restrictions, expanding benefits for the needy. During times of stagnation, they veer toward authoritarianism. Economic growth not only raises living standards and makes liberal social policies possible, it causes people to be optimistic about the future, which improves human happiness.

“It is simply not true that moral considerations argue wholly against economic growth,” Friedman contends. Instead, moral considerations argue that large-scale growth must continue at least for several generations, both in the West and the developing world.

in the last two centuries, periods of growth have in most nations coincided with progress toward fairness, social mobility, openness and other desirable goals, while periods of stagnation have coincided with retreat from progressive goals.

he contends that economic expansion must remain the world’s goal, at least for the next few generations.

Related Resource: Journal of Socio-Economics, Feb 2013

In The Moral Consequences of Economic Growth, Benjamin Friedman argues that growth reduces the strength of interpersonal income comparisons, and thereby tends to increases the desire for pro-social legislation, a position he supports by drawing on the historical records of the US and several Western European countries. We test this hypothesis using a variable from the World Values Survey that measures an individual’s taste for government responsibility, which we interpret as a measure of the demand for egalitarian social policy. Our results provide support for a modified version of Friedman’s hypothesis.

We find support for a modified hypothesis: the taste for egalitarian policy is high when growth is rising, not high.  The modified Friedman hypothesis is not particular to industrial or Western countries.  Indeed, it holds more strongly among less developed than more developed countries.  In rich countries, policy preferences depend more on the change inequality than the change in growth rates.

Lucky Because …

Source: Fast Company, May 2017

WORK ON DEVELOPING YOUR INTUITION

The most important secret to being luckier is developing skills of intuition, says Simpson. “Intuition, like any other skill, can be improved with practice,” he says. “Poet and author Robert Graves knew its value when he said, ‘Intuition is the supra-logic that cuts out all the routine processes of thought and leaps straight from the problem to the answer.’”

EXPAND YOUR CIRCLES

“In the business world, as in movies, the big breaks flow through contacts between people,” writes Max Gunther in his book, How To Get Lucky. “Not necessarily close friendships, just contacts–sometimes tenuous ones,” he explains.

Your chances of getting a lucky break are in direct proportion to the number of people you know. Develop a network of friends and acquaintances at home and at work. Attend events with the goal of meeting one new person.

“Luck flows along linked chains of people until it hits targets,” Gunther writes.

Thor Muller and Lane Becker, authors of Get Lucky: How To Put Planned Serendipity to Work For You and Your Business, say this kind of motion is a basic element of serendipity.

BE OPEN TO NEW IDEAS

While long-range plans are helpful, it’s important to not take them seriously, says Gunther. Lucky people permit themselves to be distracted by ideas that are interesting and exciting.

“The lucky are aware that life is always going to be a turbulent sea of opportunities drifting randomly past in all directions,” he writes. “If you put blinders on yourself so that you can see only the straight ahead, you will miss nearly everything. A plan can be used as a kind of guide into the future, but should never be allowed to harden into a law.”

Luck is often about making connections no one else has. For example, Arthur Fry, cocreator of the Post-It Note, learned about the adhesive technology because he happened to attend a lecture given by the inventor, Becker said in an interview with Inc.

“So, for anyone looking to activate their geek brain (the part of the brain that has many curiosities), take steps to advance your education–in whatever shape that takes,” he said. “Be alert and be present, even when you’re doing nonwork-related activities. You never know where or when inspiration will strike.”

TURN NEGATIVES INTO POSITIVES

No matter how lucky someone is, they will have to deal with adversity. Instead of ruminating over bad luck, look for the bright side or the new opportunity that presents itself.

“True champions in the world of sport define themselves by how they turn the most terrible negative into a positive,” says Simpson.

Productivity Growth

Source: Obama White House archives, Jul 2015

The third level of mystery is explaining the conceptual drivers of productivity growth. Even if we agreed on the facts of historical productivity growth, explaining those facts is more difficult still. Moses Abramovitz famously called TFP a “measure of our ignorance,” the unexplained gap between input and output.1 And a rigorous conceptual understanding of that gap continues to elude economists

Figure 2—and all subsequent references to annual U.S. labor productivity in these remarks—references real output per hour worked in the private nonfarm business sector (excluding government enterprises) as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). In other contexts, I have referenced the BLS’ labor productivity series for the nonfarm business sector (including government enterprises). The two series are closely correlated and exhibit the same trends, but excluding government enterprises permits the analysis of total factor productivity (TFP) that follows.

a simple thought experiment provides a sense of how important productivity is to incomes: what if productivity growth from 1973 to 2013 had continued at its pace from the previous 25 years? In this scenario, incomes would have been 58 percent higher in 2013. If these gains were distributed proportionately in 2013, the median household would have had an additional $30,000 in income. Had income inequality and labor force participation not worsened markedly, middle-class incomes would be nearly twice as high.

Virtually all the variation in labor productivity growth is accounted for by variation in TFP.

Why Would Aliens Visit Earth?

Source: Time, May 2017

For his new book, Aliens: The World’s Leading Scientists on the Search for Extraterrestrial Life, quantum physicist Jim Al-Khalili asked a series of experts to explore how humans might actually make contact with aliens. The possibility is not as far-fetched as it once seemed: since NASA launched its Kepler mission in 2009, researchers have discovered thousands of new planets and “revolutionized our concept of how many habitable worlds could exist,” writes astrobiologist Nathalie Cabrol in one of the book’s essays.

if aliens aren’t interested in harvesting our lands or our bodies, why would they make contact? Dartnell suspects a purer motive:

curiosity.

“If aliens did come to Earth,” he writes, it would probably be “as researchers: biologists, anthropologists, linguists, keen to understand the peculiar workings of life on Earth, to meet humanity and learn of our art, music, culture, languages, philosophies and religions.”

MYTH NO. 1: Aliens would eat us

In order for aliens to get nourishment from eating us, their bodies would have to be capable of processing our molecules (like amino acids and sugars). And that requires having a similar biochemistry–a long shot for a species that hails from a different world.

MYTH NO. 2: Aliens would breed with us

… given that we can’t even reproduce with our nearest evolutionary relative, the chimpanzee, it’s “overwhelmingly improbable” we could do so with aliens, according to Dartnell.

MYTH NO. 3: Aliens would look like us

Human evolution depended on so many unique and unpredictable factors, it’s near impossible that an extraterrestrial species would have human-like features, like the aliens in The Day the Earth Stood Still and Star Trek. It’s far likelier, writes neuroscientist Anil Seth, that they’d be as different as the octopus, “our very own terrestrial alien,” which has a high level of intelligence, a decentralized nervous system and an alternative style of consciousness.

MYTH NO. 4: Aliens would be “living” creatures

Even restrained films like Arrival get this one wrong, according to some scientists. Should aliens contact us, cosmologist Martin Rees believes we will hear not from fellow organic creatures, but from the robots they produced, who can, in theory, live forever.

MYTH NO. 5: Aliens would steal our water and metal

The aliens in Independence Day famously arrive to strip Earth of its resources. But again, that logic doesn’t add up, writes Dartnell. Most of our metal is in the Earth’s core, not its crust; asteroids would be far better targets for mining. And icy moons, like Jupiter’s Europa, would be easier places to stock up on water. They’re uninhabited, and they don’t have Earth’s strong gravitational pull.

Endowment $ per student

Source: Morss Global Finance website, Jan 2016