Your brain can register subliminal messages
aithie/Shutterstock Subliminal messages—brief words or pictures flashed on a screen quicker than the conscious mind can perceive—were first used in advertising in the 1950s, but were later banned. Although the validity of subliminal messages has been up for debate, some recent studies suggest they may be effective. In a Yale study, older participants’ self-perceptions and physical function improved after viewing a series of positive messages about aging. In another study, athletes were able to exercise longer when given subliminal motivating messages. Don’t miss these other 30 mind-blowing facts about the brain.
Intuition is a real thing
Jacob Lund/Shutterstock When you think you have a “gut feeling,” are you just imagining it? Turns out, there’s something to it. According to research, these hunches are the result of our brain storing, processing, and receiving information without our conscious mind realizing it. This intuition may rely on past experiences and external cues to form a quick reaction. The Office of Naval Research is even in the middle of a scientific project to understand the mechanisms behind instinct in order to improve Marines’ and Sailors’ ability to make split-second decisions. Find out how to tap into your own intuition.
But ESP is not a real thing
Max4e Photo/Shutterstock So if our hunches are real, does that mean ESP (extra-sensory perception) is? Not quite. According to a Gallup poll, 41 percent of Americans believe in ESP, which includes mind-reading, knowing things that are happening far away, and the ability to foresee the future. But no real scientific evidence for ESP has been found. Harvard researchers recently put ESP to a modern test—brain imaging—to see if participant’s brains reacted differently to ESP “stimuli” (such as a loved one in another room looking at the same photograph participants were). Their MRIs shows no difference. But you can get a healthy brain with these herbs.