The Iceman: Wim Hof Is a Real-life Superhero

If you’re a fan of superheroes, you have probably heard of Iceman, a Marvel Comic character that has the unique ability to tolerate the cold and turn his body into ice. But you might not have heard of the real-life “Iceman,” Dutch adventurer Wim Hof who is known for his unusual ability to withstand extreme … Continue reading The Iceman: Wim Hof Is a Real-life Superhero

Gut Health: You May Lose More than Your Luggage When You Travel

Discussing digestive function, or “gut movement,” at the dinner table may be uncomfortable, but moving—or not moving—your bowels can be equally painful. Regular bowel movements, constipation and diarrhea are influenced by many daily activities, including when you eat your meals. Throw travel across several time zones into the mix and you may be in for … Continue reading Gut Health: You May Lose More than Your Luggage When You Travel

Spotlight On: Seasonal Affective Disorder

If you feel sad, gloomy and hopeless more often in the winter months compared to the rest of the year, you’re not alone. Between 4 and 6 percent of adults in the U.S. have been diagnosed with seasonal affective disorder (SAD), also known as winter depression. Another 10 to 20 percent may not have an … Continue reading Spotlight On: Seasonal Affective Disorder

Sleeping on an Airplane: It’s All about Blood Flow

This week, the I Spy Physiology blog answers a reader question: Why is it hard to sleep upright on an airplane? Having trouble sleeping when traveling on an airplane or by train or car may not be just because of the change in air pressure or the motion of the vehicle. Your circulation—or lack of … Continue reading Sleeping on an Airplane: It’s All about Blood Flow

23 and We? Mating for Life Could Be Genetic

Spending Valentine’s Day with your sweetheart might just take on a new meaning ... an evolutionary one. Even though we live in an era in which endless opportunities for a mate are just a swipe left or right, science suggests that maybe we all have that one special someone out there. Social monogamy is the … Continue reading 23 and We? Mating for Life Could Be Genetic

Why Groundhogs Really Hibernate (It’s Not Just to Predict Six More Weeks of Winter)

On February 2, the country’s most famous groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, was once again pulled out of hibernation to ask whether we can expect six more weeks of winter. His verdict: an early spring, though according to some reports, his predictions are not very reliable. One thing that is for sure, however, is that winter is … Continue reading Why Groundhogs Really Hibernate (It’s Not Just to Predict Six More Weeks of Winter)

Why Being an ‘Active Couch Potato’ Is Bad for Your Health

Did you know that even if you exercise regularly, you may be what researchers call an “active couch potato?” Consider this: If you exercise 30 to 45 minutes a day—completing your daily workout all at one time—it is easy to still spend 80 to 90 percent of your waking hours sitting. A study in England … Continue reading Why Being an ‘Active Couch Potato’ Is Bad for Your Health

A Battle Against ‘Superbugs’ in a New Medical Era

Have you heard of “superbugs?” Superbugs are bacteria that have gained the superpower to survive in the presence of antibiotics—medicines developed to slow or kill the growth of bacteria. Antibiotics are widely used to treat infections and to prevent infections after surgery. Because antibiotics are effective and convenient, doctors prescribe them often, which may lead … Continue reading A Battle Against ‘Superbugs’ in a New Medical Era

Type 2 Diabetes and You: It’s Complicated

People in the U.S. continue to eat diets high in saturated fat and get little exercise. And more and more of them are being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. While many people with diabetes make lifelong lifestyle changes to control their blood sugar, others may not understand that eating too much sugar when they have … Continue reading Type 2 Diabetes and You: It’s Complicated

Running on Empty: No Oxygen Needed!

Take a deep breath in. Now breathe out. Each time we breathe, oxygen enters the bloodstream to keep our organs alive and working. When oxygen can’t get to our body’s tissues, they begin to fail. This is true of all organs, but most of all the brain. In conditions like stroke and cardiac arrest—when the … Continue reading Running on Empty: No Oxygen Needed!