henry copeland @hc

having fun with people and pixels, via racery, pullquote, twiangulate, improv, running

Recent quotes:

What makes you happy

As a rule of thumb, your happiness will adjust back to anything that is stable and certain like your income, the size of your house, or the quality of your TV. These things do not change day to day so you can expect your happiness level to fade. On the other hand, infrequent or uncertain positive events, like quality time with friends or an exciting road trip, occur too sporadically to get used to. Inserting more of these hard-to-adapt-to experiences in your life will create longer lasting happiness.

Why "Wilder" Nature Is Better for Your Health | Outside Online

In addition, visitors to the park and wilderness area had increased levels of joy; and visitors to the wilderness area were the only ones to have a significant decrease in cortisol levels. That’s consistent with the “levels of nature” hypothesis, much like another recent study that saw greater improvements in insulin sensitivity and oxidative stress in Korean women who spent a half-day in a “wild forest” compared to a “tended forest.”

Ken Layne of Desert Oracle Podcast on The Desert, Living Legends, and Dressing Up As A Park Ranger

It was such a part of being out on the desert in the 1990’s, in particular, because often that was the only thing you could get on the radio. Long before MP3 players, iPhones, or satellite radios. Your options were cassettes or CDs on the seat next to you, and you reached for them in the dark hoping it’s the right one. And then there was what was on the radio, and what was on FM was few and far between in the desert. So you had to do AM, and on AM you had country stations, ideally like a truck driver’s country station with Buck Owens, Merle Haggard, and Patsy Cline. Or you had Art Bell, who was blasting out of Salt Lake City, Phoenix, and Albuquerque. These things would kind of bounce off the atmosphere at night and the range would be extended terrifically. So it was very much a part of the atmosphere of exploring the desert. Whatever you were doing—driving to a national park, camping—you’d have this voice describing all this weird stuff while you’re out on a two lane looking out at the skies… And the show was live. And occasionally, like during the Phoenix Lights, that was all live on Art Bell. That whole event. Because he was on the air, up in Pahrump, Nevada, and calls started coming in from Henderson, Nevada. Just south of Las Vegas. Calls from all these people seeing these monstrous things in the sky over the highways. And then slowly, over the course of several hours, the sightings spread from southern Nevada to the Grand Canyon region. Then he started getting a ton of reports from Prescott and Glendale and Phoenix. The Phoenix Lights covered way more than Phoenix—the last sightings were in the far south of Sonora, Mexico. So this whole thing is playing out while people are out on the road, scanning the skies.
many experts pointed to the positive impact of a digital life in many areas including: Family enrichment and enhancement Work creation enabler and enhancer Health and wellness aid Community lifeline Knowledge storehouse Wonder creator and problem solver Education tool Travel companion Safety Enabler

Video: The Underlying Mechanisms of Depression

While it’s likely that there may be more going on with depression than just inflammation by itself, it could be an incredibly useful lens through which to look at promising avenues to potentially treat or prevent it, since controlling systemic inflammation shows promise as being both important for longevity and health in general. Moreover, inflammation can be clinically monitored by well-known biomarkers for systemic inflammation, making it amenable to potentially tracking therapeutic success: the risk of major depression has been shown to increase by 44% for each standard deviation increase in log c-reactive protein.

Evidence Rebuts Chomsky's Theory of Language Learning - Scientific American

The research suggests a radically different view, in which learning of a child’s first language does not rely on an innate grammar module. Instead the new research shows that young children use various types of thinking that may not be specific to language at all—such as the ability to classify the world into categories (people or objects, for instance) and to understand the relations among things. These capabilities, coupled with a unique human ability to grasp what others intend to communicate, allow language to happen. The new findings indicate that if researchers truly want to understand how children, and others, learn languages, they need to look outside of Chomsky’s theory for guidance.

Virtual runs from Acadia to Katahdin mark amazing journeys

Like so many of the participants in the Cadillac to Katahdin Virtual Run and other virtual runs, Popper has found meaning and camaraderie in logging walking, running or hiking miles. Popper, who goes by the virtual race name @jennsjourney, has appreciated comments on the race message board from fellow virtual racers, especially @Keefa and @FL2ME. “I don’t know who Keefa is, or Flamethrower,” Popper said, but the support has meant a lot as she’s on her trek to raise funds for the two nonprofits that have meant a lot to her and her husband, the East Coast Greenway Alliance and FreeWalkers.

How Shift Work Disrupts Metabolism - Neuroscience News

They found that, following the night shift schedule, 24-hour rhythms in metabolites related to the digestive system had shifted by a full 12 hours, even though the master biological clock in participants’ brains had only moved by about 2 hours. Biological clocks in digestive organs “No one knew that biological clocks in people’s digestive organs are so profoundly and quickly changed by shift work schedules, even though the brain’s master clock barely adapts to such schedules,” said co-senior author Hans Van Dongen, director of the WSU Sleep and Performance Research Center and a professor in the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine. “As a result, some biological signals in shift workers’ bodies are saying it’s day while other signals are saying it’s night, which causes disruption of metabolism.”

Suicide is a national epidemic. We need to treat it like one. - The Washington Post

These two treatments are obviously different, but they both point to an entirely new chemical axis in the brain that could be targeted to treat depression: the glutamine/glutamate axis. Commonly abbreviated Glx, these chemicals are suppressed in people with severe depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and do not increase when patients take serotonin-targeting antidepressants. The company I lead is working to develop drugs to raise Glx without the damaging side effects of ketamine or ECT. The science is promising: The FDA recently issued a biomarker letter of support, its first in psychiatry under the 21st Century Cures Act, recognizing that an increased level of Glx correlates with decreased levels of depression and that drugs targeting Glx are linked to a reduction in depression and suicidal ideation.

Association of Depressive Symptoms and Heart Rate Variability in Vietnam War–Era Twins: A Longitudinal Twin Difference Study | JAMA Psychiatry | JAMA Network

The association between depression and autonomic dysregulation, indexed by HRV, is bidirectional, with stronger evidence suggesting that autonomic function affects depression risk rather than vice versa.

Mindfulness is Key to Tinnitus Relief - Neuroscience News

Relaxation therapy provides patients with specific skills to reduce stress arousal levels. In contrast, MBCT, taught by highly-trained clinical psychologists, teaches patients to pay purposeful, present-moment attention to experiences, rather than trying to supress those experiences. Practicing mindfulness meditation in this way can cultivate a more helpful way of responding to tinnitus. People learn how to ‘allow’ and ‘accept’ tinnitus, rather than having to ‘fight it’ or ‘push it away’. Mindfulness does not aim to change the nature or sound of the tinnitus, but the therapy can lead to tinnitus becoming less intrusive, to a point where it is no longer a problem for people.

The immune system and the pathogenesis of depression

During chronic infections and other chronic medical conditions associated with intense immune activation, the sickness behaviour syndrome can develop into a depressive episode. Studies have found that certain cancer and hepatitis c therapies, which often involve the use of cytokines, have been associated with the development of flu-like depressive symptoms. The causal role of the cytokines has been established by the fact that the depressive symptoms appear almost immediately after cytokine administration and disappear shortly after cytokine treatment is terminated.

Link between autoimmune disorders and psychosis confirmed in new study

But rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis are also characterised by higher levels of inflammation, so this would not explain the negative relationships we found with these disorders. Although all autoimmune disorders activate the body’s immune system, the exact response differs depending on the disorder. This might go some way to explaining why we found different relationships for individual autoimmune disorders, and suggests that inflammation cannot be the only mechanism.

A Spymaster Steps Out of the Shadows - The New York Times

“I try to be careful with the language that I use,” he said. “When people ask me questions, for example, about why is Mr. Trump so submissive to Vladimir Putin, and whether or not Mr. Trump fears that the Russians have something on him, I say, I don’t know. Perhaps. Maybe. I just don’t want to get into details about what I know or don’t know.” He added: “I have to be very mindful of my obligations as far as classified material is concerned.”

Maximal running shoes may increase injury risk to some runners -- ScienceDaily

"We were surprised by these results," said Christine Pollard, director of the FORCE Lab and an associate professor of kinesiology. "We thought we would see the opposite. Typically, increased cushioning results in a reduction in the impact peak and loading rate of the vertical ground reaction force. We suspect that the large amount of cushioning across the entire midsole caused the runners to rely more on the shoe than on their own internal structures to attenuate these forces."

Why folks coming off stimulants have panic attacks

After conditioning rats to associate a specific sound (think of it as their Jaws music) with an aversive experience (a mild footshock), the team then began the extinction process. As expected, when the sound was played many times without the footshock, rats stopped behaving as if they were afraid of the sound. However, when VTA dopamine neurons were silenced just after playing the sound -- exactly when the rats expected their feet to be shocked -- they could not unlearn the fear response. This showed that without VTA dopamine activity at that specific time, the mental link between the sound and the shock could not be removed.

What Steph Curry's Three Minute VR Drill Means for Pro Sports

Before any of this begins, Curry dons a VR headset for roughly three minutes. His goal is simple: work on peripheral vision, spatial relationships, and hone focus to start the day. It’s like getting in the mood to play serious basketball. The mental game is powerful. Motivation and momentum are products of the mind, the perception of winning or feeling ready as opposed to overwhelmed. Curry’s routine is all about honing the sharpness of the brain and preparing for the challenges ahead. He uses a similar technique before workouts, extending the session to ten minutes. Exercises are individualized, so there may not be the need to focus as much on the method of playing basketball. Similar to utilizing VR during the offseason, there is a tremendous value to just being immersed in the game.

Starving for light – henry copeland – Medium

Without seeing a 30 minute dose of bright light each morning, your circadian clock can derail, affecting everything from gene expression to hormonal ebbs and flows to testosterone levels to virus virility to brain waves to immunity to REM patterns to fertility to heart rates to hunger to cancer.

What does running do to your brain? | Life and style | The Guardian

It would be crazy to believe that running is a universal solution to all of our psychological challenges.

First space, then auto—now Elon Musk quietly tinkers with education | Ars Technica

That first year, Musk’s children accounted for nearly two thirds of the student body. “It was really small,” remembers Dahn. “Especially when five [students] from the same family... go on vacation and you have three kids [left].” It is not unusual for parents to have a grassroots effort to build their own school, according to Nancy Hertzog, an educational psychology professor at University of Washington and an expert in gifted education. “But money talks in terms of how that school is directed and supported,” she says. “The worry would be, are these schools preventing kids from other populations getting in? Are there strict test scores, and can they support kids with disabilities?”

Sensitivity of the circadian system to evening bright light in preschool‐age children

We found robust melatonin suppression (87.6 ± 10.0%) in response to the bright light stimulus. Melatonin levels remained attenuated for 50‐min after termination of the light stimulus (P < 0.008). Furthermore, melatonin levels did not return to 50% of those observed in the dim light condition 50‐min after the light exposure for 7/10 children.

Can You Cure Lyme disease? The Controversy Around Diagnosis and Treatment

In my experience, 18 months of ozone therapy was the magic bullet against Lyme disease. Ozone inactivates bacteria, viruses, fungi, yeast and protozoa by breaking through the cell wall which weakens the cell, making way for your own immune cells to move in and do their thing. It also uses extra oxygen to activate the immune system.[8] You’ll need a functional medicine doctor to put you on a program. If you’re frustrated by Lyme disease or any chronic illness, join the club. But, don’t stay for long. The best thing you can do is arm yourself with information and seek the guidance of medical professionals who are qualified and experienced in treating the tough stuff. It takes work, but you’ll come out on the other side stronger than ever.

Ask Unorthodox: What Should I Call Really Religious Jews? – Tablet Magazine

What, then, about haredim? The Hebrew word is lifted from Isaiah, chapter 66: “Hear the word of the Lord, ye that tremble at his word.” The haredim, then, are those who tremble. In Israel, the word is mainly used by secular Jews to describe their more observant neighbors. It’s not always meant kindly, although the community itself seems to have adopted it, naming one of its leading news sites Behadrei Haredim, or in the rooms of the haredim. So is that word OK? Not really, Shafran replied. “I’m not fond of the word,” he said. “Firstly, it implies that non-haredim are less observant, which isn’t necessarily true. And secondly, while we may shuckle when we daven, we don’t generally tremble (unless the IRS is auditing us).” What word, then? What term to use? “Personally,” said Shafran, “I prefer ‘Orthodox.’ Let prefixes be used by others: centrist, modern, ultra-modern. We’re the original, in no need of a prefix.” Amen to that. And to all our friends, Orthodox and unorthodox alike, Shabbat Shalom.

Mindlessly mapping the brain – The Spike – Medium

We have one complete connectome, the 279 neurons of the nematode worm C. Elegans (for the pedants: its hemaphrodite form has 302 neurons, of which 279 form a single connected network). Texts uncountable have discussed this wiring diagram as the epitome of “a” connectome. Strictly speaking this is not true. Heroic as the original 1986 paper was, it missed out some connections; these were completed in 2011. The connectome we have is then actually an amalgam of two different creatures. What will happen if we replicate this connectome? Are there really all the exact same number of connections between the exact same neurons in every C. Elegans? It seems that each of the neurons is genetically specified, and in such a minuscule nervous system it is possible that each and every one of the connections is too. But would you bet your house on it?

The immune system and the pathogenesis of depression

There is bidirectional communication between the HPA axis and the immune system. Cytokines activate the HPA axis and thus lead to the release of cortisol, the stress hormone, which ordinarily suppresses the immune response. Cortisol also inhibits its own release and thus the body is able to maintain a stable immune response through a tightly regulated feedback inhibition system. This regulation mechanism seems to be dysfunctional in depressive disorders and is thought to occur because of cytokine mediated receptor resistance to cortisol, thus impairing feedback inhibition. This essentially means that cytokines make cortisol unable to act on the receptors that would inhibit its release. Long story short — the HPA axis is hyperactive because of cytokines, leading to a chronic stress response because cytokines impair the body’s ability to regulate it — thus leading to depressive symptoms.

Why Is Everyone Getting Shingles? – Member Feature Stories – Medium

From the late 1940s to the early 2000s, the prevalence of shingles among Americans younger than 50 more than quadrupled, Harpaz’s data shows. Some research suggests the incidence of shingles among younger adults may actually be gaining steam. At least anecdotally, shingles seems to be increasingly common among people in their twenties and thirties — a group that, historically, suffered from vanishingly low rates of the disease.