Technology making older people sharper; texting IS romantic; lack of sleep linked to illness; BMI predicts onset of Alzheimer’s

Click above to hear discussion on these subjects on The Morning Show with Declan Meehan.

This item was first broadcast first on East Coast FM on 3 September 2015

People 50 and over, are sharper today than they were before, research shows, and scientists believe that this is due to the mental demands required of them by technology and social media (Source: www.tech2date.com)

People 50 and over, are sharper today than they were before, research shows, and scientists believe that this is due to the mental demands required of them by technology and social media (Source: http://www.tech2date.com)

Today’s 50-year-olds are as sharp as 42-year-olds were in previous generations, scientists have found.

The theory being put forward to explain the finding, is that technology, apps, and social media keep older people mentally sharper.

Text messaging and email has a bad reputation when it comes to romance, with many believing it is better to communicate with a partner by phone.

Yet, scientists believe that people engage more emotionally when they are writing messages, than they often do when talking on the phone, and they take more care to edit, and get the right message across.

Lack of sleep has been linked to long-term illness and shorter lives. This has been confirmed with a new study that found that people getting six hours sleep or less, were four times more likely to catch a cold.

A person’s Body Mass Index –  calculated by reference to height and weight – can predict the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. Very obese people could develop it, scientists have found, a decade earlier than if they were normal weight.

Science & the ‘benevolent sexist’; how a chameleon changes; why maths is not natural; near total eclipse

Dooropening

Are men that open doors for women displaying sexism? One scientific study indicates yes [Picture: http://www.gentlemensavenue.com%5D

It’s something that many men do without thinking; open a door for a women. It’s just common politeness, or is it?

A study by scientists at Northeastern University in Boston, led by Professor Judith Hall, indicates that men who open doors for women may be secret sexists, of a more damaging kind for women’s equality than the more obviously misogynistic male.

A male chameleon is usually green, and well camouflaged, but it can change colour in minutes in response to another male, or a receptive female. It does this, scientists believe, by altering the spaces between crystals in its skin cells, which produces different wavelengths of light.

A almost total solar eclipse will occur on the 20th March in Ireland at 9:35 am. For a few minutes, the Moon will almost completely block out the Sun from viewers here.

Our brains are not set up for mathematics. A lot of people would agree, but it is a surprise to hear a leading French mathematician, Cedric Villani, winner of the prestigious Fields Medal, which is akin to the Nobel Prize for mathematicians, also agree. We consider why.

Listen below for discussion on The Morning Show with Declan Meehan on East Coast FM

 

First broadcast on East Coast FM on 12th March, 2015.