Tag Archives | Health

Nothing Medicinal About Marijuana (Unless it is 100% Organic)

Mark (CC BY 2.0)

Mark (CC BY 2.0)

This post originally appeared on Cannibad.

Marijuana is getting more and more of a good rap these days. With its legalization in states like Colorado and Washington, economies are booming as demand for the plant increases. Glowing reports abound in regards to marijuana’s medicinal properties, ranging from immediate pain relief for terminally ill people to the curing of cancer. Yet many cannabis consumers are quite ill informed in regards to how the plants are most commonly grown. Maximum yield/minimum overhead and the almighty bottom line is all that matters for the majority of growers. Very few of them grow 100% organically. I should know, having spent the last three years with marijuana growers in the Emerald Triangle in Northern California (Covelo). I entered this world with high hopes of contributing something of benefit to humanity but left it completely disillusioned because of the pervasive disregard for cannabis users’s health I witnessed first hand.… Read the rest

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Alessia Iannetti – Penetrated by a Nocturnal Mysticism

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Photography by Eleonora Grasso

Artist’s Statement:

Alessia Iannetti was born in Carrara (Italy) in 1985 and graduated at the Academy of Fine Arts where she had the opportunity to study with the famous Artist and Professor Omar Galliani from whom she inherited the complex graphite on board technique as “Estigmate” of the most fascinating contemporary illustration, with its cinematographic views and close ups made of blacks and whites and infinite variations of gray, that give back to the monochrome and the drawing the excellence of intensity.
 As a reply to modern conceptual language, no more so deeply contemporary, Alessia Iannetti, already placed between the most interesting artists from New Pop and New Surrealism international scene, offers a high cultured Art, which is aware of its figurative turn and proudly follows the ironical and surrealistic aspects of Neoclassicism movement.

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Which Life Form Dominates Earth?

Springtails can be smaller than a pinhead (Credit: Sinclair Stammers / NPL)

Springtails can be smaller than a pinhead (Credit: Sinclair Stammers / NPL)

Nic Fleming Via BBC:

We humans tend to assume we rule the Earth. With our advanced tool making, language, problem solving and social skills, and our top predator status, we like to think of ourselves as the dominant life form on the planet.

But are we?

There are organisms that are significantly more numerous, cover more of the Earth’s surface and make up more of its living biomass than us. We are certainly having major impacts in most corners of the globe and on its other inhabitants.

But are there are other living things that are quietly having greater, more significant influences? Who or what is really in charge?

If world domination is a numbers game, few can compare with tiny six-legged, shrimp-like springtails, or Collembola. Ranging from 0.25-10mm in length, there are typically around 10,000 per square metre of soil, rising to as many as 200,000 per square metre in some places.

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The Good, The Bad and The Robot: Experts Are Trying to Make Machines Be “Moral”

I, Robot coverCoby McDonald Via California Magazine:

Good vs. bad. Right vs. wrong. Human beings begin to learn the difference before we learn to speak—and thankfully so. We owe much of our success as a species to our capacity for moral reasoning. It’s the glue that holds human social groups together, the key to our fraught but effective ability to cooperate. We are (most believe) the lone moral agents on planet Earth—but this may not last. The day may come soon when we are forced to share this status with a new kind of being, one whose intelligence is of our own design.

Robots are coming, that much is sure. They are coming to our streets as self-driving cars, to our military as automated drones, to our homes as elder-care robots—and that’s just to name a few on the horizon (Ten million households already enjoy cleaner floors thanks to a relatively dumb little robot called the Roomba).

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Death Is The Road To Awe: The Art of Joseph McVetty.

Visions Of The Reverend Mother, 35''x46'' Latex paint, gouache, and pencil on paper.

Visions Of The Reverend Mother, 35”x46” Latex paint, gouache, and pencil on paper.

Joseph McVetty is an artist and illustrator living and working in Portland, Oregon. The masked participants of these drawings are acting out communal rituals involving new age occult signifiers such as crystals, chakras, energy fields, levitation, and conjuring. Each drawing aims to evoke the feelings associated with the cultish, drop-out supernaturalism, and homespun magic.

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Freedom of Choice Degree Zero

Screenshot of Taco Bell’s “Routine Republic”

Screenshot of Taco Bell’s “Routine Republic”

A. S. Hamrah writes at the Baffler:

Soon there will only be two kinds of ads on broadcast TV: commercials for things that make you sick and commercials for things that cure the illnesses caused by the things that make you sick. That’s why fast-food ads are stocked with images of youth living it up, while Big Pharma ads feature old people enjoying themselves despite their afflictions. These two types of ads follow each other with an inexorable logic, alternating the vibrant primary colors of childhood with the washed-out pastels of old age. TV tries to create life in time slots. Drama and comedy are interrupted on schedule for servings of Chicken McNuggets and pills. On broadcast TV, those are the Ages of Man.

This restless flickering between life and death makes sense for a time in which the broadcast networks’ mission of offering entertainment for the whole family generates diminishing returns.

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In the Beginning there were Simple Chemicals – New Evidence on the Origins of Life

Via Phys.org:

In the beginning, there were simple chemicals. And they produced amino acids that eventually became the proteins necessary to create single cells. And the single cells became plants and animals. Recent research is revealing how the primordial soup created the amino acid building blocks, and there is widespread scientific consensus on the evolution from the first cell into plants and animals. But it’s still a mystery how the building blocks were first assembled into the proteins that formed the machinery of all cells. Now, two long-time University of North Carolina scientists – Richard Wolfenden, PhD, and Charles Carter, PhD – have shed new light on the transition from building blocks into life some 4 billion years ago.

“Our work shows that the close linkage between the of amino acids, the , and protein folding was likely essential from the beginning, long before large, sophisticated molecules arrived on the scene,” said Carter, professor of biochemistry and biophysics at the UNC School of Medicine.

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Fructose contributes to weight gain, physical inactivity, and body fat, researchers find

Tony Alter (CC BY 2.0)

Tony Alter (CC BY 2.0)

Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology via Science Daily:

In the last 40 years, fructose, a simple carbohydrate derived from fruit and vegetables, has been on the increase in American diets. Because of the addition of high-fructose corn syrup to many soft drinks and processed baked goods, fructose currently accounts for 10 percent of caloric intake for U.S. citizens. Male adolescents are the top fructose consumers, deriving between 15 to 23 percent of their calories from fructose–three to four times more than the maximum levels recommended by the American Heart Association.

A recent study at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Illinois found that, matched calorie for calorie with the simple sugar glucose, fructose causes significant weight gain, physical inactivity, and body fat deposition.

The paper, “Fructose decreases physical activity and increases body fat without affecting hippocampal neurogenesis and learning relative to an isocaloric glucose diet,” was published in Scientific Reports.

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Magic mushrooms ‘less harmful than thought’ and should be reclassified, says leading psychiatrist

RuthArt (CC BY 2.0)

RuthArt (CC BY 2.0)

Charlie Cooper via The Independent:

Psychedelic drugs including LSD and magic mushrooms are much less harmful than has been claimed, and should be reclassified to make it easier for scientists to research their potential benefits, a leading psychiatrist has said.

Promising medical research into psychedelics ground to a halt as long ago as 1967, when they were made illegal amid widespread concern about their psychological and social harms.

However, writing in the BMJ, psychiatrist Dr James Rucker, said that no evidence had ever shown the drugs to be habit-forming. There is also little evidence of harm when used in controlled settings, and a wealth of studies indicating that they have uses in the treatment of common psychiatric disorders, he said.

Researchers are beginning to look again at how LSD and psilocybin – the active compound in magic mushrooms – might be of benefit in the treatment of addiction, for obsessive compulsive disorder and even, according to one small Swiss study, to alleviate the symptoms of anxiety in terminally ill patients.

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