Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Why Do We Dream?

      Though we didn’t focus on something specific, we dream! Even if we tried anything, no guarantee that it occur! We know every one of us dream, but none can recall everything. Doesn’t it very strange part of life..? This is the one of the big, long lasting and very curious question kept pending, intern this was supposed to be my first blog post, but unfortunately dragged since 2010. No luck yet (I meant no answer!) Then what this post for..? Might be because of this it was dragged so far and led to impotent in cutting the sources which I researched. Again all I can say is articles on psychologytoday.com

What is a dream?
Dreams are highly visual, focused, confusing and unclear. Dreams have been seen as a connection to the unconscious. It can include any of the thoughts, images and emotions that are experienced during sleep. (Briefed why it is unclear in physiological theory below)

When it occurs?
In the rapid-eye movement (REM) stage of sleep - when brain activity is high and resembles that of being awake; but our muscles suffer temporary paralysis. REM sleep is revealed by continuous movements of the eyes during sleep. At times, dreams may occur during other stages of sleep. However, these dreams tend to be much less memorable.

        Dreams can last for a few seconds, or as long as twenty minutes. People are more likely to remember the dream if they are awakened during the REM phase. The average person has about 3 to 5 dreams per night, but some may have up to 7 dreams in one night. The dreams tend to last longer as the night progresses. During a full 8-hour night sleep, two hours of it is spent dreaming.

What makes us to dream?
Two different theories that support, as to why we dream:
physiological and the psychological theory

The physiological theory centers upon how our body, specifically our brains functions during the REM phase of sleep. Proponents of this theory believe that we dream to exercise the synapses, or pathways, between brain cells, and that dreaming takes over where the active and awake brain leaves off. When awake, our brains constantly transmit and receive messages, which course through our billions of brain cells to their appropriate destinations, and keep our bodies in perpetual motion. Dreams replace this function.
Two underpinning physiological facts go towards supporting this theory of dreams. The first lies in the fact that the first two or so years of one’s life, the most formative ones for learning, are also the ones in which the most REM sleep occurs. It follows that during this time of the greatest REM sleep, we experience the greatest number of dreams. The second physiological fact that lends credence to this theory is that our brain waves during REM sleep, as recorded by machines measuring the brain's electrical activity, are almost identical in nature to the brain waves during the hours we spend awake. This is not the case during the other phases of sleep.
Psychological theories of dreams focus upon our thoughts and emotions, and speculate that dreams deal with immediate concerns in our lives, such as unfinished business from the day, or concerns we are incapable of handling during the course of the day. Dreams can, in fact, teach us things about ourselves that we are unaware of.

Our knowledge as to what causes us to dream is limited to the fact that dreams occur during the REM stage of sleep.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Anything Too Much Can Be Harmful To Your Health

       We all might have seen, normally parents used to force their kids to drink more and more water, that should be fine as they wouldn’t be asking for it or may be couldn’t able to express the thirst. But have seen few people here in Bangalore made practice of having water forcefully. Especially people working in corp world have adopted or may be brand sake uses branded and stylish container and few even keep track of the quantity to meet day’s target. Though they won’t sweat much; might be due to pressure/tense if I’m not wrong.
If that is the case and if we believe in quote “athe aadre amruthanu visha aguthe”
won’t that applicable to water …?

Let me take an example of commonly used electric free aqua purifier that we may prefer due to save either electricity or budget perspective, and also we have been advised by the vendor to replace chemical battery used in it when indicator turns RED. Won’t this same apply to human kidney?

      In Jan 25th 2007 there was a contest "Hold Your Wee for a Wii" held by KDND an FM (107.9 MHz ) radio station in California. In which, Jennifer (mother of 3) participated to win Wii(video game console) for his son and unfortunately died for consuming more water in short period (water intoxication.) Later court rewarded $ 16.5 million as compensation to her family from KDND.

Impact of unnecessary water consumption – It actually put unnecessary strain on your body in two major ways:
1.   It increases your total blood volume. And since your blood volume exists within a circulatory system, needlessly increasing your blood volume on a regular basis puts unnecessary burden on your heart and blood vessels.

2.   Your kidneys must work overtime to filter excess water out of your circulatory system. The filtration system that exists in your kidneys is composed in part by a series of specialized capillary beds called glomeruli. Your glomeruli can get damaged by unnecessary wear and tear over time, and drowning your system with large amounts of water is one of many potential causes of said damage.

Putting unnecessary burden on your cardiovascular system and your kidneys by ingesting unnecessary water is a subtle process. For the average person, it is virtually impossible to know that this burden exists, as there are usually no obvious symptoms on a moment-to-moment basis. But make no mistake about it: this burden is real and can hurt your health over the long term.

So how much water should a person drink to best support his health?
       Hello.. Are we machines to have such protocol across! If you agree each person is unique then how it could be the common to all..? Many of us have been advised that, a person should drink at least 3 – 4 ltr of water per day. But according to Dr Ben’s research, it completely depends on our unique circumstances, including your diet, exercise habits, and environment; rather than min/max on quantity of water that we consume.

If a person having foods that are naturally rich in water, such as vegetables, fruits, and cooked legumes and whole grains, he may not need to drink much water at all. If he do not use much or any salt and other seasonings, his need for drinking water goes down even further.
Conversely, if a person consumes bit salty and spices in his meal, he might need to drink several glasses of water every day.

Regardless of diet, if a person sweat on a regular basis because of exercise or a warm climate, he will need more water than someone who does not sweat regularly.
Ultimately, Dr Ben’s guidance is to follow your sense of thirst.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The Black Sky & White Sun

  Doesn’t this title seem pretty strange with slight twist..? I'm sure that you would have repeated at least twice this title, same happened with me when I glance over this statement in an article recently. Dark sky-white sun! But you & I have seen normally is yellow sun on earth. I just couldn’t control my curiosity and started pitching my Guruji for the same (I haven’t made a move with such questions in my school days to be frank;  referring Guruji to Google here) and finally understood that…
    Out in space, the sky looks dark and black, instead of blue. This is because there is no atmosphere. There is no scattered light to reach your eyes. 

Why is sky blue on earth?
    Light from the sun or a light bulb may appear as white, but it is actually a combination of 7 colors.Way back to school days, we all have experienced the same with piece of glass- PRISM.

Light travels through space in a straight line as long as nothing disturbs it. As light moves through the atmosphere, it continues to go straight until it bumps into a bit of dust or a gas molecule. Then what happens to the light depends on its wave length and the size of the thing it hits.

     Dust particles and water droplets are much larger than the wavelength of visible light. So while hitting these large particles, it gets bounced off in different directions. The reflected light appears white because it still contains all of the same colors. 
     As gas molecules are smaller than the wavelength of visible light, some of it may get absorbed & radiates (gives off) the light in a different direction. The color that is radiated is the same color that was absorbed. The different colors of light are affected differently. Though all of the colors can be absorbed, but the higher frequencies (blues) are absorbed more often than the lower frequencies (reds). This process is called Rayleigh scattering (It is named after Lord John Rayleigh, an English physicist, who first described it in the 1870's.) When absorbed high frequencies (blues) radiated in different directions, it gets scattered all around the sky. And hence whichever direction you see, the sky looks blue!

Why sunset RED?
      As the sun begins to set, the light must travel farther through the atmosphere before it gets to you. More of the light is reflected and scattered. As less reaches you directly, the sun appears less bright. The color of the sun itself appears to change, first to orange and then to red. This is because even more of the short wavelength blues and greens are now scattered. Only the longer wavelengths are left in the direct beam that reaches your eyes.