12 Crazy Facts About the Human Brain That May Be Hard to Believe

Losing sleep can have the same effects on you as alcohol.

It probably won’t lower your inhibitions or make you more sociable, but going 48 hours without sleep will impair your “cognitive abilities to the same degree as having a blood alcohol concentration of 0.1%, above the legal limit for driving in every state.”

Source: Harvard Medical School

woman sleeping
read-books

Reading books may add years to your life.

A Yale study determined that regular readers had a 20% less chance of dying in the next 12 years than non-readers, regardless of race, education, wealth, or other factors, or other factors.

Source: Harvard Medical School

Your brain physically shrinks when you get older.

As if getting old wasn’t bad enough, some parts of your brain associated with complex mental activities actually get smaller as you age.

Source: National Institude on Aging

human brain
people-walking

The spinal chord has its own intelligence system that controls walking.

Breakthroughs in the understanding of our spinal cord have led researchers to restore the ability to walk in previously paralyzed patients.

Source: WebMD

Every 65 seconds, someone in the United States develops Alzheimer’s Disease.

This awful disease kills more people than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. Visit alz.org to get help, contribute, or learn more.

Source: Alzheimer’s Association

purple-ribbon
magnifying glass looking at bacteria

Brain Eating Amoeba can enter your nose in lakes, rivers, and hot springs.

Only four of the 143 people known to have been infected in the U.S. between 1962 and 2017 have survived.

Source: WebMD

Your brain might be morphing stressful family vacations into pleasant memories.

Your own mind can trick you into believing you had a better time than you actually did.

Source: New York Times

Vacation family
people and their dogs

Caring for a dog could boost your brain power.

Participants in the study were in their 80s and demonstrated better mental performance after spending quality time with dogs.

Source: Harvard Medical School

Despite the common use of anesthetic drugs to induce unconscious states, barely anything is known about how they work.

That’s…reassuring.

Source: New York Times

operating room
extended family

Being a grandparent can potentially be beneficial for your brainpower.

“Those who watched their grand kids one day a week performed highest on two out of the three tests. However, women in the study who watched their grand kids five days a week or more actually scored worse on tests of mental function.” Too much of a good thing?

Source: Harvard Medical School

An estimated 350,000 people worldwide leak brain fluid out of their nose per year due to head injury.

The article actually says “five of every 100,000 people,” we took the liberty of scaling it up to a population of 7 billion.

Source: WebMD

runny nose
women doing yoga

Physical exercise enhances your mental abilities.

We all know that working out has physical benefits, but apparently exercise is good for your brain as well!

Source: Harvard Medical School1,2,3 and The New York Times4

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