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How is Exercise Good for Depression?

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woman using an exercise bike

Worldwide, millions have been diagnosed with depression. The World Health Organization reveals that over 3.8% of adults globally have some form of depression (mild, moderate, or severe). Although there’s no cure for depression yet, medicines and exercise have been recommended by health professionals to improve mood and well-being. But researchers have found that intense exercise improves moods, especially in patients diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD). Here’s the latest study on how exercise is good for depression.

The Study

The Challenge

Researchers Meyer et al. published a study in the journal of Psychology of Sport and Exercise. They have discovered that no research has yet shown the effects of exercise related to a few of the main causes of depression, primarily anhedonia (no longer feeling pleasure) and cognitive abilities.

Research and Methodology

Thirty volunteers participated in the study. They had to rate their mood states, anhedonia (through a scale), and cognition before, during, and after the exercise. The researchers also included a Stroop color and word test to test the volunteers’ cognitive abilities.

The Result

The researchers found that several volunteers had already experienced their moods improving during the exercise. They also revealed that anhedonia had lifted but eventually returned after 75 minutes. As for their cognitive ability, researchers observed that reaction times were fast during exercises. However, participants’ cognitive abilities had dropped, which led them to become slow (with their reaction times). 

The effects of exercise last up to 75 minutes post-exercise. It could go even longer. 

Another particular effect of the study is motivation. They disclosed that despite the promising results for several participants, it’s not enough to motivate participants to stick to exercise. However, the researchers are hopeful that the improved mood can last longer than 75 minutes and would be helpful to those diagnosed with depression.

The researchers aim to do a similar study in the future, which will help them identify the times’ participants’ moods start to decline.

Exercise IS Good for Depression

As the great Elle Woods said, “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy.” Although, instead of happiness, doctors would say the phrase, feel good.

Meyer et al.’s research isn’t the only study that has demonstrated that exercise has been helpful in boosting moods, especially for those diagnosed with MDD. 

There have been thousands of studies published since 2019 about exercise and depression. A study by Hu et al. compiled 100+ studies on exercise and depression. They found that most studies support the link between exercise and its impact on decreasing depressive symptoms.

Is there a specific workout you should do to help you feel good?

The internet’s greatest friend (or foe) when it comes to checking symptoms, WebMD suggests biking, dancing, swimming, moderate jogging, and yoga can help with depression. 

Saeed et al. compiled all related studies that suggest which activities can help with depression. Aside from those mentioned before, Tai Chi, Qi Gong, and meditation are also interventions that aid in decreasing depressive symptoms. Based on their research, yoga has more positive effects as compared to exercise. Not only that, but meditation combined with other methods mentioned here, can also have a positive outcome on a patient.

At the end of the day, anyone with a depressive disorder can decide which is the best form of physical intervention that will help boost their mood. Most health professionals would agree that exercise is the best option for alleviating depressive symptoms. Dr. Miller from Harvard says it can also help with physical well-being. And for those who have trouble starting, he says they can start with a few minutes at a time and then eventually increase the time. Plus, it’s also all about finding an enjoyable exercise for you.

Getting Help

If you need or you know someone who needs help getting treatment, you can visit the following websites:

National Institute of Mental Health – https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/find-help

PsyCom – https://www.psycom.net/get-help-mental-health

United for Global Mental Health – https://unitedgmh.org/mental-health-support

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Scientists Published Research on Newly Discovered Aquatic Arthropod

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aquatic arthropod

It’s fascinating to know that even if millions of years have passed since the extinction of several species, paleontologists can still discover the former existence of prehistoric animals. Moysiuk et al. published their article on the newly discovered aquatic arthropod in Lake Simcoe in Canada.

Newly Discovered Aquatic Arthropod

Joseph Moysiuk and his research team published their findings last March 24, 2022, on the new aquatic arthropod they found in Lake Simcoe in Ontario, Canada. 

The Tomlinsonous dimitrii is the scientific name of the aquatic arthropod. It was named after the company Tomlinson Group, which owned the quarry where the dig happened. Moreover, the company allowed these scientists to dig at their site, and the scientists named the newly found creature after them as a gesture.

It was part of an extinct arthropod group called the marrellomorphs. They existed over 450 million years ago.

What does this arthropod look like?

fossil and illustration

But what makes this discovery different from most fossils? Apparently, this creature is blind. It has no eyes at all. Not only that, but the researchers theorize that this creature also used stilts to move around underwater.

The arthropod is small, around 2 inches long. Live Science describes it as a few centimeters shorter than an index finger, and it can even fit in your hand. 

It has a shield-like structure and horns covered by spines that appear like feathers. Meanwhile, the arthropod’s body structure appears like an insect or spider, having multiple limbs and one that stands out from the set. That’s where the stilt comes in.

The scientists have also revealed that although most fossils would come in the form of shells and dinosaur bones, it’s rare they found a soft-bodied organism. Even the researchers have said that it was well-preserved.

Background on Lake Simcoe and Other Malleromorphs

This arthropod may seem unique, but George Kampouris, a co-author and paleontological technician, explains that other marrellomorphs can be found in other dig sites. For instance, paleontologists may find these creatures in the Cambrian Burgess Shale. There, paleontologists found a soft-bodied arthropod, the Marella splendens.

Moysiuk explained that malleromorphs may have taken up residences in those dig sites because back then, the quarry in Lake Simcoe was submerged in water. As millions of years passed, storms caused the seafloor to be covered in sediment. He explains further that there might have been a “rapid burial” of the organisms largely due to hurricanes.

Where is it now?

The fossil of the aquatic arthropod is now housed at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. It’s on display at the Wilner Madge Gallery, taking part in its exhibit, Dawn of Life.

Other Newly Discovered Species in 2022

As historical as this new finding is, the newly discovered aquatic arthropod isn’t the only one found by scientists this year.

On March 3, 2022, Chinese scientists published their work on their findings of the fossils on the Bashanosaurus primitivus. It’s considered one of the oldest records of the stegosaurus in Asia.

But what about living species, which ones have been found this year?

One of the most notable findings in 2022 was the Greta Thunberg frog. Although it was discovered in 2012, recent studies have shown it was a new frog species.

Here’s another living organism named after a famous personality. Scientists found a new species of millipede, and they named it after Taylor Swift. The species is now called Nannaria swiftae. It’s one of the 16 species found in the Appalachian mountains.

Despite finding new organisms or creatures over the years, Danielle Parsons and her co-authors have published their research that only around 1 to 10% of species have been discovered. According to the researchers, it’s important that species should be discovered for conservation purposes.

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GM Announces Plans to Go Electric with Its Chevrolet Corvettes

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black car

On April 25, General Motors President Mark Reuss announced that the company would produce an electrified Chevrolet Corvette next year. An all-electric version of it will follow this. Reuss said that the manufacture of the traditional models, those with internal combustion engines, will still continue.

However, the GM president did not disclose when the all-electric version of the iconic car would be released. He also didn’t specify if the electrified model would be a traditional hybrid or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. The automaker’s confirmation of these electric Corvettes may be due to the increased pressure from Wall Street. 

King of EVs

According to Wall Street analysts, Tesla is the king of eclectic vehicles (EVs) and is optimistic that legacy automakers will catch up quickly. The pressure is now on for rivals to compete against it. This was after GM’s fierce rival Ford Motor announced that it would hold an event for its electric F-150 Lightning pickup. This is mainly due to the latter receiving crucial attention from the media and numerous investors.

Shares of Tesla rebounded in December 2021 after UBS increased the price target on the stock. For this, it called the electric vehicle company the “undisputed leader.” Global demand for electric vehicles will drive the company to exceed expectations this year. Ford Motor’s reason for the initiative was to dominate the electric pickup market.

Electric Corvette

Rumors have already been circulating that GM will be manufacturing electric Corvettes. This was even mentioned by President Joe Biden, who is a Corvette owner himself. This announcement confirms what the president told us about 18 months ago—there will be an electric Corvette.

The automaker has made public its plans to sell electric vehicles exclusively by the year 2035. It is in the process of releasing 30 brand new EVs internationally by 2025. GM plans to do this via a $35 billion investment in electric and autonomous vehicles by then.

An “Electrified” Version of an Icon

In Reuss’ announcement, he mentioned that aside from the new Chevrolet Corvette Z06, the company will offer a fully electric Ultium-based Corvette in the near future. This alongside their production of other gas-powered variants.

GM spokesman Shad Balch explained what an “electrified” version is during the same announcement. It means that an electrified vehicle does not fully operate on electricity. He further declined to comment on the specific type of application used.

Furthermore, Reuss only confirmed that the electrified Corvette would be released early next year. Other than that, he divulged no further details and information.

Two years ago, the Detroit Free Press made a confirmation that an electric Corvette would come out. It cited its source as someone familiar with GM’s production of the Corvette and announced this at the automaker’s Bowling Green Assembly in Kentucky in 2020. The source declined to be named as they claimed no authority to speak on behalf of the automaker. 

GM also mentioned that it will have an all-electric vehicle lineup across all its brands by 2035. It noted that Cadillac will be the lead brand for the technology. Cadillac confirmed this, saying that this brand lineup will almost be all-electric by 2030. 

Thirty new EVs will also be produced and released to the market by the middle of the decade. It is planning to sell a million EVs globally beginning that time. Alternatively, the company will start production of the gasoline-powered 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 3LZ convertible at the Bowling Green Assembly in the summer of this year. As with the electric Corvettes, the automaker hasn’t released the starting price yet.

And for other stories, read more here at Owner’s Mag!

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How China Tree Breeders Will Benefit from A Business Model Without Destroying the Environment

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people

After doing thorough research on China’s coniferous tree, Pinus tabulaeformis. In July of last year, Chinese scientists published their study in Cell, a well-renowned global journal. In the article, they wrote about how they uncovered the genetic code and the molecular mechanisms that regulate the evolution of the said tree. Read more about the China tree breeders here.

Scientific Breakthrough

trees

Thousands of China tree breeders hailed this study as a scientific breakthrough that will help in the cultivation of the tree native to China. The group of breeders, which included Wang Lianmau of Jiangxi Fenglin Investment, stated that this would help the trees to grow faster and more robust. Wang added that this breakthrough would make the trees less susceptible to diseases and pests. 

Wang’s company has lauded the work done by the researchers at Beijing Forestry University. The general manager of the company, Wang, also mentioned that he believed that this would pave the way for better selection and breeding of faster-growing and high-yielding trees. He added that this would produce timber with higher quality and better resistance to diseases. 

Wang also mentioned that Fenglin is in talks with the researchers to do the same for two other tree species. The company’s 23,000-hectare plantation is located in Jiangxi province in southeastern China. The uncovering of the genetic codes for Pinus elliottii and Pinus kesiya, Wang says, will boost the development of forestry as carbon goes down.

Afforestation

The process of establishing a stand of trees in a region that hasn’t been forested previously is called afforestation. In it, trees and tree seedlings are introduced either naturally or artificially. This process has confirmed that trees can absorb and store greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide.

This will provide a natural solution that will significantly help Chinese President Xi Jinping’s promise to achieve carbon neutrality by the year 2060. Plantations that can reduce their carbon emissions will earn them tradeable credits. It’s through unregulated carbon markets after verifying that they follow sustainability and management standards.

A challenge was posed to turn this concept into a business model that can make money, states professional investors. One that can combine afforestation with timber sales, by-products, and carbon credits. This, according to Chan Tak-yuen, CFGC Amital Green Fund adviser.

This fund’s objective is to raise $100 million US dollars. It aims to back companies that are sustainable, use high-yielding afforestation, create carbon storage projects, and develop the required technology. 

Harvesting Income Streams

Currently, Fenglin is already harvesting income streams from its trees, according to Wang. He also noted that more than 70% of these revenues come from the sales of turpentine, rosins, and resins from the plantation. In addition, pine trees will be sold as timber once they reach the felling age of 25 years.

The remaining income is from the carbon credits the plantation receives. Wang noted that over 60% of the plantation area is already qualified as carbon storage. This is the first-ever and most extensive commercial development since 2016.

Outside China

Afforestation has attracted professional investors mainly due to its ability to mitigate climate change. It is partly because of the hedges for the risk of the rising costs of offsetting carbon in other investments.

News then came out that JP Morgan Asset Management bought Campbell Global, a forest investment and management company, for an undisclosed amount. The latter has $5.3 billion in assets and over 680,000 hectares under management around the globe.

Furthermore, New Forests, a forestry private equity investment firm in Sydney, Australia, aims to raise $300 million to support a Southeast Asian forest fund this year. The firm manages over 1.1 million hectares with a value of $5.8 billion US dollars. This endeavor has already received commitments from investors for $120 million.

And for other top stories, read more here at Owner’s Mag!

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