Author Archives: Reetu Shah

Does Honey Work Better than Cough Medicine?



Photo found here!

I love honey! I love honey for so many different reasons! Fun fact, honey can lighten the color of your hair. It has small traces of hydrogen peroxide that gradually lightens the color of your hair. Honey mixed with yogurt on your face is a great mask. It has a great calming effect. Stated from Real Food for Life, on the benefits of honey, by Diana Herrington, the article talks about how honey does amazing things for the body. It contains many antioxidants and helps prevent cancer. It can regulate the blood sugar, and overall just strengthen the body’s immune system.Honey is also an amazing anti-bacterial and helps with sore throats. It has really helped me during Thanksgiving break when I had a bacterial throat infection. I literally finished 2 bottles of honey in 1 week.

There was a very interesting article from Penn State College of Medicine on how honey could be better than normal childhood cough medicines. Apparently in recent studies, cough medicines were asked about how safe they were. So people began to look for other ways to lessen their child’s cough. The study proposed that buckwheat honey could provide relief to coughs better than a child having nothing or even anti-cough medicines. The honey was shown to reduce the infection, and helped with the cough. A big factor to honey is that it is safe for children over 12 months. The thing that I was shocked by is that, diphenhydramine, (component in cough medicines) performed no better than the placebo! Why do we take these cold medicines in the first place?

So to explain this study it was on a total of 105 children ranging from the ages of 2-18. The first night, the children didn’t have any treatment done. There were 5 questions asked about the sleep and cough of the children. The parents answered these questions. The second night, kids ether got honey, honey flavored DM (diphenhydramine), or no treatment at all.

Null Hypothesis– Honey will have no effect on the children’s cough

Alternative Hypothesis– Honey will have an effect on the children’s cough

x-variables-  kids having honey, cough medicine, or nothing

y-variables- effect on children’s cough

confounding variables- kids didn’t get too much sleep

chance-could be a possibility

The study was a blind placebo. The medical staff didn’t know who was getting what. The family who got the honey or DM were blinded. Parents who got nothing knew they got nothing because in their envelope was an empty syringe. So overall the families said that the honey was better than the DM or nothing at all.

If I were to replicate this study, which I would want to do, I would have just honey versus the cough medicine. I would also get more of an input on how the kids felt because they are the ones we are observing. Not the parents view on it. This then would lead me to my next point, I think I would do this one age group. This article was overall very interesting. Now I know to consume honey a lot more. I have been doing it anyway, but now I know it is actually beneficial for coughs too!

Herrington, D. (2012) 10 Health Benefits of Honey. Real Food for Life


(2007) Honey Proves a better option for childhood cough than OTC’s. Penn State News.


Does your Social Hierarchy Affect your Health?


Photo from here!


Do you remember in high school when we had our groups or cliques as some would say? If you were popular you were probably loved by everyone, and if you were not, you were kind of an outcast. There were also all the other groups in the middle. I found a very interesting article that talks about female rhesus macaques, monkeys. They go through the same thing that most of us went through in high school. They form groups and the monkeys at the top socialize a lot. The monkeys who are ranked lower on the scale of popularity quarrel, and get ridiculed by peers.

Catherine Caruso from Scientific American talks about a study published by The American Association for the Advancement of Science published, on how the social status within these monkeys can affect their immune systems. She discusses how researches from Duke University, Emory University, and University of Montreal had 45 female macaques and divided them into 9 groups of social hierarchy. They then analyzed the macaques’ immune functions. The monkeys of higher status had an increase of immune cells to protect them from viral attacks, the monkeys with a lower status had intense activity and that responded directly to the bacterial invaders. They then formulated a hypothesis:

Hypothesis: The relationship between the social ladders to the monkey’s immune system is causal. Also, in varying social conditions, reverse causation is possible.

x-variable- rank of social status

y-variable- immune system (overall health)

confounding variable- no confounding variable, because this article was published and peer reviewed.

chance- could be a possibility

Reverse causation is possible because if you had a monkey who was quite sick (with a lower immune system), then that monkey wouldn’t be at the top level because the other monkeys wouldn’t want to be around the sick monkey.

The researchers then manipulated these groups and make up their own ranks. The higher class had many social bonds while the lower class were still being harassed and out casted. What is the mechanism? Why does this keep happening? Caruso begins to ask questions like, do they start out already sick? The lower class monkeys don’t get good access to good food while the other higher class monkeys find better food.

Jenny Tung (co-author) and her colleagues at Duke wanted to test whether social status really was the x-variable. The researchers put all the high class monkeys together and grouped them going down the social hierarchy. Again we have 45 monkeys being put into 9 groups of 5. In the highest group of monkeys, the lower class one out of that 5 had a lowered immune system. This shows a very strong causal relationship between social class and immune system in the rhesus macaques.


Another article titled “How Social Status Affects Your Health”, by Christopher von Rueden from the New York Times talked about the same concept but on humans.  Rueden and his colleagues did a study for a couple of years on people Tsimane horticulturalists in Bolivia. They concluded a study and found that men with a lesser amount of political influence had increased levels of cortisol, a stress hormone. In this study they did control other factors like body and age. Like the last article, the main thing we are looking for is the mechanism. Rueden talks about how maybe the people in the higher class have access to people in the food production area so they remain well-nourished and healthy. Maybe the lower class does not get that much support and that is why they are so stressed. There could be many reasons to the why, but again we don’t know the exact reason.

I was really interested in some of the other reasons for this causation. From an article titles, “Work, Stress, and Health, and Socioeconomic Status”, from the American Psychological Association, there are many possibilities that could be the mechanism. Of course this depends on the place and subjects you are studying, but again these are just hypotheses. One reason was that people whose work requires a heavy work load might require a lot of physical demand. This could easily take a whole on one’s health. Also if one is stressed from a lot of work, this could lead to fatigue and sleep deprivation. Overall most of these reasons had to do with stress taking toll on one’s health emotionally and physically.

This was definitely a really interesting article. From monkeys to humans, the causation is most definite. I definitely think more studies would be interesting to look into. I am not going to lie, this does kind of scare me. Just by the way one is socially ranked takes a toll on one’s health. Is it just a psychological thing? Can one beat it?
Ahh so interesting


(2016) Work, Stress, and Health and Socioeconomic Status. American Psychological Association.

Carcuso, C. (2016) Who’s Top Monkey? How Social Status Affects Immune Health. Scientific American.

Rueden, C. (2014) How Social Status Affects Your Health. The New York Times.




Exercise Helps the Soul :)



Photo from here!

My biggest stress reliever is exercising! Back when I was a freshman I used to preach about it to the whole world. After playing basketball or working out I always felt happy, motivated, and much focused! It was the best feeling and it helps in so many ways! I also have some anxiety so it helps me with that too. I wanted to see an actual experiment being done on this, so I did some research and found so many articles on the benefits of exercise!

I came up upon on online article about the effects of exercise written by Kirsten Weir from the American Psychology Association. Many scientists talk about how exercise correlated with people’s mental state. Jennifer Carter, PhD, a sport psychologist and the Center of Balanced Living in Ohio, talks about how therapy does help and there are so many health benefits to moving your muscles. Michael Otto, PhD, professor of Psychology at Boston University talks about how many people know that exercise helps people physically, but are less aware of how it helps mentally. Otto also concludes to how high the correlation between exercise and mood is. In this study James Blumenthal, PhD, Clinical Psychologist is going to test the hypothesis.

Hypothesis: People who are active are less depressed than people who are inactive. People who used to be active and stopped, tend to be more stressed than people who have kept exercising or just started.

Null Hypothesis: People who are active are not less depressed than inactive people. People who used to be active and stopped are not more stressed than people who have keep exercising or just started.

Alternative Hypothesis: People who are active are less depressed than inactive people. People who used to be active and stopped are more stressed than people who have keep exercising or just started.

 X-variable: Being active

Y-variable: less depressed

Confounding variable: daily amount of exercise, diet

Chance: could be a possibility 

Blumenthal picked adults with major depressive order and conducted a randomized control trial.He split these adults into four groups:

  • People who were supervised while they exercised
  • People who exercised at home
  • People who practiced anti-depressant therapy
  • People who took a placebo pill


After four months Blumenthal states that exercise and anti-depressant groups, “had higher rates of remission than did patients on the placebo”. Exercise was pretty comparable to therapy in the study overall. Blumenthal later followed up with the patients a year after. He found that subjects who regularly exercised had a lower depression score than their peers who exercised less than them. He later concluded that exercise also helped in preventing relapse. One big challenge that is mentioned in this study is how it is very hard to measure depression, but overall the study concluded that doctors should add exercise to treatment plans for depressed patients. I really do believe that exercise does help with reliving stress. This article did somewhat of a decent job showing that. I do have a few problems with this article though. The first study after four months grouped the therapy and exercise group together. We don’t even know how exercise stand on its own. We can’t truly see the results of just exercise. My second problem is after a year, they compared those who exercised to those who exercised less. That doesn’t make any sense! We don’t get a true visual of how those who exercised had their depression scores go down. It would have been a lot better to compare people who took the placebo pill (not exercising) to those who did exercise. I would definitely replicate this study in those ways. This would also need to be peer-reviewed by other scientists.

Like I was saying in the beginning, exercise helps with many different aspects to our body, and as I would say, soul. Stated from Krista Stryker, on how exercise makes us happy from Mind Green Body, she talks about how exercise relieves stress. She states that exercise increases the heart rate and actually lowers the stress in our body. As you exercise more, you will actually get better at handling these stress relievers.

Exercise also helps with focus. This is what I have been preaching about lately. Since college is filled with distractions, there is always so much work to be done, and we need to use our time efficiently. In an article on different ways exercise affects your intelligence from Forbes by Jennifer Cohen, she discusses all the aspects in how exercise helps the body. While she talks about focus, she explains that exercise helps the brain focus for a couple of hours after exercising. It really helps people perform at their peak.

I really want to show and see how much this can help students so I thought of a study.

There are 50 college students who will be split up into 2 groups of 25. The 1st group is the control group and won’t get exercising for the 10 days. The 2nd group will be jogging for 60 minutes a day for the 10 days. We are going to give them an assignment, and see how fast they get it done, and of course how they well they did. We are more focused on the time though. I also would like to get data on any distractions they encountered between the 2 groups. I would then analyze the results to see if there was a decrease in time and distractions with the 2nd group.

 Null Hypothesis: Exercise does not help students focus.

Alternative Hypothesis: Exercise does help students focus.

X-variable-exercise (that is what we are manipulating)

Y-variable-how well the students focus

Confounding variables-students are already smart, already pretty focused

Chance-could be possible

 This definitely isn’t a clear cut experiment because there are so many 3rd variables at play. Another huge factor is that it is really hard to measure focus. There definitely needs to be more meta-analyses done on the topic of exercise and focus because most of the articles I have read are about exercise and happiness. But from what you can see about all these article, there are many reasons why you should exercise. Especially with our hectic college lives. By the way, 20 minutes of dancing never hurt anyone, so have fun with it!

Cohen, J. (2012) 6 Ways Exercise Make You Smarter. Forbes

Stryker, K. (2013). 6 Reasons Why Exercise Makes You Happy. MindBodyGreen.

Weir, K, (2011) The Exercise Effect. American Psychology Association.

Are Children Really Scientists?


Are Children Really Scientists?

Group of children (9-12) watching experiment in school laboratory


Photo found here

Scientists conduct experiments, study patters, and learn from what they observe in studies. Recent studies from the MIT news site have shown that children learn in similar ways compared to scientists. Deborah Halber talks about how preschoolers don’t conduct experiments or understand statistics but they are unknowingly grasping patterns. They are using the observations they see to problem solve. Toddlers are starting to make causal inferences around them. Moreover, they think in a cause and effect relationship. They don’t believe something magical or spontaneous will occur; they need to know the reason why, the need to see the evidence.

Schulz and colleague Jessica Sommerville of University of Washington conducted a study on whether children would accept that the cause might work some of the time. This study consisted of 144 preschoolers.


Hypothesis: To test whether kids believe if the cause will always produce some type of effect.

Null Hypothesis: Kids will not believe that the cause will produce some type of effect.

Alternative Hypothesis: Kids will believe that the cause of something will produce some type of effect.

The study: The experimenters showed the kids that by turning a switch, the toy with a metal ring would light up. One-half of the group saw the metal switch work all the time. The other half saw the switch light up the toy some of the time. Removing the ring also stopped the toy from lighting up. Experimenters had control of the switch, and gave the toddlers the toy. They asked the children to stop the toy from lighting up.

With the switch that worked, the ring was removed. If the switch worked sometimes, the children didn’t remove the ring. They assumed that the experimenters had a sneaky way of ending the effect. They surprisingly took a small keychain flashlight, hidden in the experimenter’s hand and tried to turn off the light using that. The toddlers didn’t accept that it might work sometimes, they tried to look for an explanation. In this study the null hypothesis would be rejected because the kids believe that there was a cause to why the light wouldn’t always turn on. They could not accept it.


x-variables- the light switch working (that is what we’re manipulating)

y-variable- belief in some type of effect

confounding variables-(?)

chance- could be possible


It is interesting. I read this article and 2 other articles on the same subject and each study they used was about this same one. It seems like this was probably one of the only studies done on the topic of this. Of course there could be more, but most of the studies did just talk about this experiment. Maybe we could be dealing with the fil drawer problem in this situation.  This study would most definitely need to be replicated. We would need to see if the new study’s data correlates to what this experiment’s data suggests. There would also need to be meta-analysis done. There aren’t that many studies done on this topic. And after all that, this would need to be peer-reviewed by other scientists to really pick out any errors, or misjudgments in the study. I definitely feel like this study does have a sharpshooter problem. It seems like they just studied the toddlers, noticed something, and went with it. Also the biggest thing I realized was that they never said how many kids took that keychain, they just kept it vague. This study definitely needs a lot more done, so people can really start to take out the confounding variable and see what’s really going on.

If I were to do a study on this, I would have 100 toddlers. They would be randomized and they would be split up into two groups. 50 and 50. In the experiment, the control group of 50 kids would see that if they press a button, a ball goes into the air (this would be elevated by a string). The other 50 would see something a bit different. They are going to press a button that might or might not make the ball go into the air. I want to test whether toddlers will look for an explanation as to why the ball does not go into the air while the button is being pressed.

Hypothesis: When the button stops working, the kids will look for some type of explanation.

Alternative Hypothesis: When the button stop working the toddlers won’t look for any type of explanation.

Null Hypothesis: When the button stops working, the toddlers will look for some type of explanation

X-variable-button working or not

Y-variable-kids looking for some type of explanation as to why the ball isn’t moving up

Confounding Variable-maybe how much sleep the baby got.

Chance- always a possibility.

I really think we could learn a lot from replicating this study and seeing what data we find. If we could somehow cultivate this curiosity throughout the children’s lives, we could change people’s perspectives on science. It really is good to be curious instead of taking this world for granted. What do you guys think about the study? Do you think we could find the same data with a replication?


Halber, D. (2006) Scientists show that children think like scientists. MIT News.





chocOLATE    Picture found here

I was looking at Science Illustrated (an amazing magazine by the way) the other day. I found an article called, “Snails improved their memory after eating chocolate”. I thought it was interesting so I looked further into it. Apparently chocolate can actually help with memory!

So it’s not actually chocolate but there is something in cocoa and green tea that can further the amount of time and strength of a snail’s memory. It is a type of antioxidant and also a natural phenol that goes by the name of epicatechin (epi for short). It is a type of flavonoid. The epicatechin in the chocolate is what is supposedly helping people (and snails) with their memory.

Hypothesis: Chocolate improves memory

Null Hypothesis: Chocolate does not improve memory

Alternative Hypothesis: Chocolate does improve memory

So in this study Snails improved memory after eating Chocolate Professor Kenneth Lukowiak and researchers from the University of Calgary tested this hypothesis on snails. Yes, snails! This experiment randomized the snails into two groups, a control group and a treatment group. So the control group was 1 group of pond snails in standard pond water. The next group of pond snails were in pond water with an epi solution. This is equivalent to how much humans consume so it didn’t affect the snail in any other behaviors.

So here the x-variable is the snails being exposed to epi.

The y-variable is an improvement in their memory abilities.

Some 3rd variables could be: type of water, temperature of water. This isn’t a well conducted experiment because it was only done using 30 snails. There is also no replication to this experiment.

Chance could be possible.

Getting back to the study, they did a 30-minute session where they trained the snails to, “keep their breathing tubes closed in deoxygenated water”, stated by Shirley Chau in a Science Illustrated online article. The control group remembered this for less than 3 hours. The other group had this memorized for up to 72 hours. Due to these results the scientists rejected the null hypothesis. So does chocolate improve memory? Yes, yes it does on snails. We still don’t know how well it would work on humans though.

The next study used the concept of extinction to see the strength of the memory. This is process in which they, “override old memory with new memory”, Shirley Chou states. They teach the snails how to open their breathing tubes. The epi-group kept their snorkels shut. It took 3 training session for the epi-group for the extinction to go through. It took the control group 1. This means that the epi-group remembered it so well, it wasn’t that easy to forget, or override their old memory. The control group on the other hand, forgot the memory pretty fast, and overrode it with a new one, in one training session.

I read another article pointing that chocolate is an antioxidant that can help with one’s memory skills. This article had done studies on human beings.

Hypothesis: Eating chocolate gives one better memory

Null hypothesis: Eating chocolate will not give one better memory

Alternative Hypothesis: Eating chocolate will give one better memory

There was a study, To Improve a Memory, Consider Chocolate, done by Dr. Scott A. Small and the study’s senior author at Columbia University Medical. People from the ages from about 50-69 drank a mixture containing high amounts of cocoa flavanols. After 3 months, this group did 25% better on a memory test than the group who got lower amount of flavanols. The experiment I used here did not mention whether this was a randomized or control experiment in the original study.

So here the x-variable is the cocoa flavanols that are being manipulated for the two groups.

The y-variable is improvement in one’s memory.

Some 3rd variables could be: hardness of test, diet

Chance could be possible.

For this article I really wish they would have given exact measurements of how much the high amount of cocoa flavanols mixture had compared to the lower amount. How do we compare those 2? We would have seen the type of effects the cocoa flavanols had if there was a double-blind placebo trial done in this experiment. This control group would be a group of people who would receive a mixture of a mixture that really had no cocoa flavanols at all.

So at this point you should probably get a bag full of Halloween candy and bring it to class. If the teacher has something to say, just say that you want to get an A in the class. JUST KIDDING. So most of the milk chocolate we eat is really processed and that results in most of the epicatechin being taken out of the chocolate. The Nature Journal talked about how dark chocolate is what you need. To get your daily dose of high-flavanol you have to eat 300 grams of dark chocolate a day. That is 7 bars worth! Looking at the studies, I still don’t see a strong correlation. Yes, it worked on the snails, but the humans didn’t really show an effect because we couldn’t compare to a control group. We really don’t know the effect of one group with and without chocolate because in the second study, both groups got the chocolate mixture. I am personally really interested in this whole study so I thought my own study to try on my peers.

My study

For my study I really wanted to focus on college students the most. I mean hell, we need it to ace those tests. I would conduct a double-blind randomized placebo trial. They would be randomized from major, gender, and year. It would need to be randomized because college is full of diverse students. Also for example, if we got all Pre-Med majors, a lot of what they do is memorization. This would not help out study.  The control group consisting of 10 people would be given 4 fake bars of chocolate for 2 weeks. The other group (10 people) would eat about 4 bars of dark chocolate a day, for 2 weeks. No one would know what chocolate bars they were getting. Overall this study should be replicated and more studies done on this topic so 3rd variables can get ruled out. It would be easy to find students on this campus because there are so many students. Once there are more studies on this experiment and this topic on general we can also get peer reviewed by others.

Hypothesis: Dark chocolate improves memory skills

Null Hypothesis: Dark chocolate does not improve memory skills

Alternative Hypothesis: Dark chocolate does improve memory skills.

So here the x-variable is the dark chocolate.

The y-variable is improvement in memory skills

Some 3rd variables could be: diet, workload,

Chance– yes, it is a possibility

So after 2 weeks I would give the 20 students a memory test and see how they did.The funny thing is I hate dark chocolate it, but am willing to eat if it helps me with my memory skills! So my question to you is how could I test this on myself? I have a couple of ideas like making myself take 2 tests. 1 without eat dark chocolate and one with. Please, I would love to hear your ideas, and YES, I am seriously going to do this.

raw  Picture found here


Belluck, P. (2014) To improve a memory consider chocolate. New York Times.


Chou, S. (2012) Snails improved their memory after “eating chocolate”. Science Illustrated.

Why do we get songs stuck in our heads?!

I listen to music about 24/7. I just love dancing and singing to it. Unfortunately I will be singing these same tunes for the rest of the week. Is it the beat that draws us in, or the voices that we cant forget?

I found this interesting article pretty much talking about this concept. Chau Tu , from the blogpost, “Why do we get songs stuck in our head?” she talks about how when we cant forget a song, its like we have an earworm inside our head. This is pretty much the 8 second catchy tune that we just cant forget. a study showed that 91% of people had a song stuck in their heads once a week. Some had the song, or earworm, stuck in their head once a day. (One song a day). The reason for how or why they get stuck in our ears are still unknown. Scientifically it is very hard to track. It does have to do with something in our brain called a brain’s motor cortex. It goes through a lot of activity when our head plays a song.

My questions is, could this be a false positive?
Could we just be making a big deal about thinking about a song in our head? Personally, I like replaying songs in my head. What if the only reason we remember it so well, is because we played it so many times. That would be the reason we remember it so well right?

I would want to conduct an experiment where we give about 100 people 5 songs to listen to. They have to listen to these songs for about an hour. I want to see which kids would remember what songs? Maybe these music technicians have a way of putting their beats together that make us remember it for a reason, (that lets them going all the way to the bank haha). If one song stands out the most, I would ask everyone why they liked it so much. Maybe it was just that they liked the singer, the beats, or they connected with it emotionally. I mean if we seriously think about the big picture, if there is a catchy hit, the people who made that song can make a lot of bank!

What do you guys think about this topic?
Do you think there could be another factor that plays into all of this?

Here is the link: http://Why do we get songs stuck in our head?

Competitiveness, Nature vs. Nurture?



How do kids growing up get to be so competitive? I really never understood this. Growing up I wasn’t that competitive. I never wanted to be so rude to someone while playing basketball. I just wanted to have fun. Now in college, in my major, I have grown increasingly competitive. I am in a major where a lot of kids take the work for granted. They don’t realize that how screwed they are, when they get out of the field. Before I didn’t really care what people made for their projects, but now I just get so mad. I am amazed by how people don’t work hard, and how they produce high school quality stuff rather than college material. It honestly motivates e to blow people out of the water. I am a pretty nice person, its just, when I see these people being so lackadaisical, I just have to beat them.

I read an article that talks about how kids about the age of 5-6 start increasing their level of competence. Its funny because 3 year old apparently just imagine that they are really good at different tasks. I feel like it does definitely depend on how the parents might raise the child. they might encourage these competitive behaviors, or tell them to chill out. Its hard because sometimes we tend to tell them both unknowingly. I know some parents who pushed kids too hard and they just all together didn’t care. Or you have the students who take it, and push themselves to be the best of the best. How do these scenarios differ? Mt parents are that competitive. Hell, they don’t care what I do, as long as I give it my all. My extended family on the other side can get pretty competitive, and I am starting to agree with them. Now talking about it, it really does seem like it depends on each scenario.

If I were to do an experiment though, I would track about 6 families. I personally would do families with one child, because siblings can affect kids too. I would want to have 3 of the parents be super competitive. I would pick 3 other parents who are pretty relaxed, and don’t care about that stuff. This obviously would take a long time, but I want to get data, and observations how these kids are raised. And what they are like at the age of lets say 20 years old. The x variable would be the types of parents because that is what we are manipulating. The y variable would be the results talking about whether they were raised to be that way, or they just got it from outside forces. A huge 3rd variable would be the environment. If someone grew up in Silicon Valley, they are going to be insanely competitive, vs someone  who is born in Missouri. It all really depends. Also another one is who influences you.

Why do we love Snapchat so much?



Snapchat has taken the world over slowly but surely. From being something that no one ever really talked about, it is now a world phenomenon. People from all over the country are pouring in stories. Even companies are using the hell out of it to market their products and services. It is an app where the user can send a picture or video lasting up to 10 seconds. Just 10! Why is that such a big deal?!

A YouTuber that goes by the username of Mashable explain a lot of different reasons why people like Snapchat so much. I found this really interesting, and I think you will find some of the facts fascinating too!
Here is the video…
Why we love Snapshot so much!
1. Simplicity. It is so simple, we just take a picture or video and send it. Vine is so complicated, people edit things, and make overnight hits. Here we just take a candid video and send it out to whomever.
2. People get to be themselves. Since people’s pictures or videos are going to viewed for 10 seconds (or less) they can do whatever the hell they want to do. They can make whatever face they want to make. After the time is over, the picture or video has disappeared forever.

3. The most interesting fact I got from this is how Snapchat lessens the stress about performances on social media. To explain, when you put a picture on Facebook, we always like to see who liked it, and how many people liked it. If we don’t get as many likes, we might get self conscious about the picture. On Snapchat, no one knows how many followers you have. They have no clue how many views you are getting.

I am going to the topic about how we crave for attention on these social media sites. People put videos and so much content out their for the world to see. I feel like its because we want the world to know what we are doing. We want the world to know how hard we are working.
I think it would be interesting to see a study of how avid Snapchat users handle their lives with no Snapchat. I find this so interesting because I am obsessed with Snapchat. I am that one friend who posts 30 posts a day! Last year I had to delete it (to focus on school work more) and it was really hard for me. It was weird not talking about my day to a camera, or just sharing things to the people who followed me. Last week I decided to do it again. It wasn’t that bad. I felt weird the first day, but after that, I just didn’t care! I didn’t care what people were posting, I didn’t care to tell people what I was doing. The little things really don’t matter!
But anyways you follow me @Reetud2 I put out great motivational and funny content. (Haha btw I swear I look better in person, that picture was a while ago)

So after that shameless plug, lets get into the observational experiment. I want to have 30 avid Snapchat users. They should be posting about 20 pictures/videos a day. Them using the app is the x variable, which we are then going to manipulate. And hey lets say (from my example) that the y variable could be that people after not being so attached to the app, start to let go, and not care about what their close friends are doing on a daily basis. (now yes, these people do still have other social media platforms, but Snapchat is the only one to really tell you what people are up to 24 hours of the day. I would just then observe what you happen. Would they have withdrawal symptoms like I had last year. Would they crave the need to share a picture of their lunch with the world? Or would they just stop caring. The time for this would be a week. Believe me, that’s a long time. The biggest thing I would want to see out of this is obviously how they dealt with it, but also if people event want to go back to the app. I personally am debating myself, I just don’t see the need to see what other people are doing.


What do you guys think about Snapchat and how it has changed this world? What do you think about people’s obsessions with the app?


A lot of people on this blog have been talking about whether music helps one study better.


I used to listen to a lot of rap while doing homework during freshman year. The problem was, I ended up rapping to the lyrics, and never really knew what I was reading. To reaffirm my experience, Nick Perham, in a cognitive psychology blog, also talked about how it’s hard to really memorize what you are reading because the other notes and word in the song might confuse you.

Cognitive Psychology Blog Could it Help?


So as I was researching I found a lot of article on studying with music. Is it good for you? Is it bad for you? There are so many 3rd variables that go in between and that includes, the volume, rhythm, genre, and even how many words are in the song. There is also something known as the Mozart Effect, which talks about how if you listen to Mozart, you will be smarter. Many of the articles stated that listening to music before performing a task is actually really good because it relaxes you. These articles are all on the topic of whether music helps with studying.

DO or DONT study with music

Can music help you when you study ?


Unfortunately, overall, we don’t really know whether its good or bad. At the end of the day it really depends on you. I summarized all this because I am more concerned with something else.

Like I said, I don’t listen to rap songs anymore, but what about rap instrumentals? Yes, they can get loud, and they do have intense beats, but they have no words. No word for me to get distracted too! I also feel like the intense beats get me hype, and more motivated to start working. If its instrumentals that I already know the song of, I will sing the lyrics in my head. So unknown instrumentals are better.

There are no articles talking about this, so I thought of an experiment.

It would be a blind placebo effect trial. I am going to have 20 students. To keep it all the same, each student will be in a study room, so there are no outside distractions. Then 10 students will be listening to rap instrumentals, just beats. In this case I would make sure they aren’t known songs, otherwise students will probably get distracted because they would be trying to rap along to the song. The other 10 wouldn’t be listening to anything, just silence. During the 30 minutes, they are going to read a passage and take a small 10 question quiz on it. The questions would be about details in the passage, maybe a few on comprehension.

The x-variable is the instrumental rap music. We are manipulating it by letting the 10 people listen to it, and not letting the other 10 listen to it.

The y-variable is how well they understood the information.

Then after I would see their results.

3rd variables in this experiment could probably be whether they even like the beats they were listening to. Another one could be how loud or quiet their music was. Now realizing everything, there could also be other things to look at. Maybe how fast they finished the quiz, and then maybe how fast they finished the quiz plus how well they did on it. There are many factors to look at.

What do you guys think? If you do listen to music while studying, have you tried listening to instrumentals? Have you tried listening to rap instrumentals?

But why Leeches?!




Three years ago I went to India to visit my family. My grandmother’s feet were swollen up. They put leeches on her feet suck the blood and tissue fluid. This of course relived the swelling of her feet. Fun fact, she never knew we put leeches on her feet. I think if she actually knew what was going on, she wouldn’t have let it happen. We just told her to rest, and she slept through it every time.

It’s interesting how leeches are known to be horrendous blood sucking monsters, yet we have used them for centuries for helping treat humans. This method of using leeches has been used for 1000’s and 1000s of years. Back in the day it was referred to as “bloodletting”.

The information we talked about in class was about how people really believed in bloodletting. They went to a whole other extreme of letting blood for a long period of time. Many people died because well obviously they lost too much blood.


Why are leeches still used today?

Leeches can be seen as a controlled variable. When people were taking out other people’s blood, back in the day, the blood just kept going out of their system. In this case, if leeches are taking too much of one’s blood they can just be taken off of the skin. Some leeches stop taking blood because they can’t hold anymore in their system. I believe that is why this type of bloodletting system is till today.


But what are leeches used for?


After reading all the articles about leeches. They do a lot more than you think they would. Especially because we just heard about how they were used back in the day for Bloodletting.

Leeches treat burned skin and provide “blood flow to the damaged tissue” stated from a web article on Leech Therapy, from Leeches also blood clotting, and most surprisingly helps with reconstructive surgery. So when the blood gets clotted, leeches un-clotting it can reattach limps and veins. It is kind of crazy! Leeches help so much


So leeches of course start with using their suckers to attach on to a human (or animal) and takes blood from its host. Stated by Melissa Jackson from the BBC News Online Health Staff, “The leeches saliva contains substances that anesthize the wound area, dilate the blood vessels to increase blood flows and prevent the blood from clotting”.

 BBC News on the Magic of Leeches

Overall, I would rather trust a leech than anything else taking my blood. They are controlled, and also they have been used for so many years. How could I not trust them?!

PBS Link on Leech Therapy

This text does have different fonts because I type some of it on word.
Thank you


So I have a huge passion for motivation. I love the idea and topic of it. And overall I just feel like motivation is the key to success in anything a person wants to achieve. There are a lot of tips and tricks… but I decided to research the science behind it. Dopamine Levels are usually fired due to a traumatic experience, but now it is said to be linked with motivation. It is interesting because motivation is really a hard thing to feel. Sometimes we feel it, sometimes we just get lazy. So what is the science behind motivation?


In the article, it has been said that a neuroscientist has seen that rats that had lower levels of dopamine were less motivated to climb over a fence to get their food. The rats with a high dopamine level ended up getting the food.


From “The Science Behind Motivation” article by Sujan Patel, it is stated that the ““go-getters” had higher levels of dopamine in the reward and motivation portions of the brain – the striatum and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. The “slackers,” on the other hand, had a higher level of dopamine in the area of the brain associated with emotion and risk – the anterior insula”

We can all get motivation but when do we stop working? Achieving things is an overlapping of “motivation and willpower”.

It has been discovered that “willpower is a finite resource” said by Sujan Patel in the Forbes article.

willpower come into play?

When we make decisions throughout the day, we tend to use up that willpower. This starts to go down because of our brain making so many decisions throughout the day. This is called decision fatigueless.

To prevent getting so fatigued during the day,

There are some tips to help.

  1. Do the most important tasks at the start of your day
  2. Make a good routine so you don’t waste time
  3. Say no to some things, and focus on what needs to get done.


science behind motivation


That Science Class thooo

Hello guys, what is up? My name is Reetu Shah and I am majoring in Film with a minor in Business. I love around King of Prussia. So I took this class because I needed a science gen ed. I didnt drop this class because I thought it was really interesting. This isn’t one of those stupid classes where its just about regurgitating the information onto a test. I am kind of scared for the challenge because I am trying to kill it in all my other classes, but you know what… why not? And hell, out teacher was on Med Ted Talk so you cant really find anyone better than that.
I personally did always enjoy science. Many people in my family were in the sciend field, so I have grown up reading those types of books. Every magaine in my house is a Science magazine. Its actually pretty insane. I was especially into the environment. I was the biggest eco freak. (That is what I called myself). So in the first semester of college I decided to major in Environmental Engineering/Science. (I couldn’t decide between the 2). Then once I tried to memorize these Chemical compounds and I was just like damn. I can definitely do this, but I am not passionate about it. So I went to Business and now am majoring in Film. I like Science, but I am not that passionate about it.


Here is a huge plug, because why not.  I make Youtube videos here and there. I talk about a lot of MOTIVATIONAL AND TIME MANAGEMENT VIDEOS!
So if you need help with to do lists, getting rid of distractions, managing time, or even getting motivated to do school work… Check me out here…  Reetu Saha

12341228_1643451449257619_7530509869281079823_n<<<<One my my favorite videos about GETTING RID OF SOCIAL MEDAI DISTRACTIONS