Sunday, August 11, 2013

Studies to distrust

a UC Berkeley study links sleep lack with junk food cravings.

first pseudoscience part:
A UC Berkeley has linked sleep deprivation to junk food cravings, finding that high-level brain regions required for complex judgments and decisions become blunted by a lack of sleep, while more primal brain structures that control motivation and desire are amplified.

uh, "high level" brain is the thinking brain, but also does a lot of other things like move your body.

Moreover, he added, “high-calorie foods also became significantly more desirable when participants were sleep-deprived. This combination of altered brain activity and decision-making may help explain why people who sleep less also tend to be overweight or obese.”
Previous studies have linked poor sleep to greater appetites, particularly for sweet and salty foods, but the latest findings provide a specific brain mechanism explaining why food choices change for the worse following a sleepless night, Walker said.

there is another explanation, of course.

That depressed people tend to eat "comfort foods" or food that give them energy, like junk food. Depressed people also have sleep problems. They often have insomnia, and then wake up at 3 am (The medical joke is that there is an alarm clock that goes off at 3 am and wakes all our depressed patients).

you also have population bias; not everyone eats junk food. For example, I might eat "comfort food" but not junk food. This suggests that their obese patients were poor, who routinely eat high protein high fat foods with sugary drinks at the fast food restaurants.

Wonder if they have any depressed upper class gourmets in their population?

a similar study out suggests that kids who watch too much TV have fewer social skills.

The implication is to get all these kids in government day care to train them to act properly.

Yet, one wonders if the children who tend to be shy and/or nerdy prefer to spend time with a tv or computer than to play with kids who routinely ridicule them or tease them.

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