What can you believe?

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I recently came across a list of facts purported to be true. After I did some research, I found out what I suspected to be the case – you can’t believe everything you read … that is, unless you read it in the Marysville Journal-Tribune.
Here’s one of those interesting “facts.” Stomach acid can destroy razor blades. You may have heard this before when someone’s trying to make a point about how strong hydrochloric acid is in your stomach. It is actually produced by the stomach lining. For obvious reasons, the research revealed that this has never been tested on humans in their stomach. If you had a razor blade in your stomach, there would be lots of other problems to deal with.
All research has been done outside the stomach using its acid and razor blades. In just 24 hours, the corrosion on the razor blades was extensive and they were 50 percent destroyed. It was also noted that during the same time, stomach acid did not affect tiny round batteries or pennies. But after all, we are checking the effect on razor blades and it would seem that this fact must be true.
Here’s another proposed fact – Wear nice shoes since people always look at your shoes first. Well seriously, that’s no news to most women. Shoes are our favorite purchase … the cuter the better. However, my experience with men and shoes is that it is not so important to them to wear great shoes. They feel that comfort is the most important thing.
Another interesting purported fact is that if one of your extremities “goes to sleep” you can “wake it up” by random shaking of your head. I couldn’t wait for this to happen so I could test it out. One night I woke up and my arm had gone to sleep and here was my chance to try this out. I begin moving my head and neck in every way possible, with very little result in the numbness in my arm. I do not believe the shaking had any effect on my arm. I have to give this fact a, no. I hope you’ll try it and maybe have some success.
Here’s an interesting “fact” – there are at least nine other people in the world who look exactly like you. I couldn’t find any research to substantiate this, but I suppose they are simply going with the odds. How many combinations of faces could there really be in the world? I know that several times in the past people have told me I look just like someone they know in another state. I have also had the feeling that someone I just met looks like a person I know, even though they can’t be related. It would be fun to meet these people who look like you and see if you actually feel that way, too.
Interesting “fact” – you can go for a month without eating, but after only 11days without sleep you will die. This turns out to be untrue. My research indicated that the record for the longest period without sleep is 18 days, 21 hours and 40 minutes during a rocking chair marathon. Really? The record holder reported hallucinations, paranoia, blurred vision, slurred speech and memory and concentration lapses. Also I learned it’s sometimes impossible to tell if someone is really awake without close medical supervision. People can take catnaps with their eyes open without even being aware of it. I am pretty sure I have never gone to sleep with my eyes open.
It has also been reported that with those 18 to 24 years old, severe sleep deprivation can cause the same affect as a blood alcohol level of .5 percent. Hmmm. I guess there are some advantages to being an older person.
Interesting “fact” – a 30-minute walk every day and smiling is the ultimate anti-depressant. Well my research certainly tells me this is true. In fact, smiling is more then merely an automatic expression of friendliness, politeness or a good mood. It also influences our brain chemistry, triggering feelings of happiness and pleasure. Even if we feel miserable, we can give ourselves a real boost by smiling. Simply changing our facial expression can improve how we see ourselves and the world.
Researchers have shown smiling can positively affect our immune system strength, sense of well-being, blood pressure and resilience against stress. This is powerful!
Smiling releases endorphins and serotonin. Endorphins are natural painkillers. The more endorphins your brain releases, the more your body can fight off symptoms of illness. Serotonin is a brain chemical that acts as a natural anti-depressant.
Surprisingly, studies clearly verify that some smiles have more impact than others. The broader the smile the better, and don’t forget to use your eyes. Squint them up. This broad, all-involved smile is called the Duchenne smile, and is purported to work much better than just a little smirk.
You can actually smile your way to happiness. Try it!
(Melanie Behrens – melb@marysvillejt.com)



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