Environmental stressors can affect the quality and length of not only the affected individual's life, but his descendants as well. Environmental changes in stress levels, annual temperatures, pain and food supply critically affect the lifestyle, reproductive success and lifespan of adult animals and their children for generations.
New research suggests that environmental stressors and traumatic memories may be passed down for at least two generations, increasing the risk for chronic disease. The World Health Organization has reported that death from chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, respiratory disease and diabetes, has surpassed all other causes of death. Approximately 40% of the deaths from chronic disease were premature, with most attributable to environmental stressors, including physical inactivity, obesity, alcohol and tobacco use and excessive salt intake.
In the winter of 1932, Olympic athletes competed in Lake Placid, New York. In England, Agatha Christie published her 12th mystery, Peril at End House. In Asia, the “January 28 Incident” sparked a short war over the city of Shanghai between Japan and China. And farther to the south, in Australia, the Great Emu War broke out.
There are two types of memory: short term memory and long term memory, right? Short term memory includes things like the phone call we just finished, what we had for breakfast, and who is picking up the kids today. Long-term memory is the face of our best friend from third grade, whether we paid our taxes on time last year, or the names of the bones in the human body from high school biology class.
Serious conservation efforts are vital to the survival of 30 or so vaquita porpoises. Sometimes called the “smiley-faced pandas of the sea” due to the dark outlines around their mouth and the black circles around their eyes, these are all that remain in the wild. Scientists predict the species could be extinct by 2018. Native to the upper Gulf of California, their global population has plummeted by 90 percent in the last six years. Ten years ago, when the baiji, or Chinese river dolphin (Lipotes vexillifer), became extinct due to over hunting and pollution, researchers estimated the vaquita population at 500 individuals, making them the most endangered cetacean (whales, dolphins and porpoises) in the world.
Smaller than the size of Manhattan, Henderson Island is covered by 18 tons of plastic garbage–– the weight of three elephants worth of plastic bags, German bottles, Canadian plastic containers, tarps, toys, New Zealand fishing crates and more from all over the world.
A Lancet Psychiatry study recently found the brains of both boys and girls with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD are smaller than those of other children. Dutch neuroscientists found the greatest differences in brain size between children under age of 15 with ADHD and those without attention problems who are in the control group. A look at the brains of adults with ADHD indicates there is a developmental delay in brain growth. The good news is that children with ADHD seem to be able to catch up to their peers as they grow and develop.
Quoting Jacques Cousteau, “We must plant the sea…using the sea as farmers instead of hunters. That is what civilization is all about—farming replacing hunting," Bren Smith reveals how his award-winning three-dimensional ocean farm can produce 30 tons of sea vegetables and 250,000 shellfish per acre every five months. It also boosts biodiversity by providing protected habitat for other fish and creates interesting dive sites for recreational scuba divers. The only parts of the farm visible from land are a few buoys.