Inactive ingredients are a common staple of prescription medications. Often, they’re pretty harmless additives, like water, salt, or table sugar.
But some inactive ingredients may not be so inactive after all. A press release published by the National Institutes of Health yesterday says some inactive ingredients display biological activity, including “inflammation-related properties.”
Red speckles and poofy, majestical shapes that appear to be pulled straight from a fairy tale are most likely at the forefront of your mind when you think of mushrooms – or, perhaps, some colorful, swirly-whirly imagery and “hippie babble” come to mind.
But there’s far more to mushrooms than meets the eye. Mycelium, the vegetative part of fungi that forms during the hyphae growth stage of mushrooms, has piqued the interests of researchers around the globe.
In recent years, scientists have put mycelium under the microscope due to its physical strength and pharmacological properties. This has opened the floodgates for mycelia to serve as a natural construction compound for building houses or creating new medicines.
Bodies of water dry up before our eyes. Temperatures rise and the heat grazes our skin. We hear the calls of stray wildlife forced out of their natural homes by land development in our backyards. We can smell toxic pollutants and have learned to idolize “fresh air.” Contaminants slither into our rivers and we ingest them through dishes of fish delicacies.
Climate change is happening all around us, and yet, many individuals surveyed during the 2012 to 2016 California droughts felt the situation and climate change were a “distant” problem that didn’t directly affect them.
“Even in more directly affected places, there was often reference to the drought having a greater impact ‘elsewhere’ in the State,” the study explains.
The world is your oyster, not your dumpster – although it’s often mistreated as such.
The non-profit organization Keep America Beautiful reports the United States spends approximately $11.5 billion to clean up litter annually. However, crumbled up plastics and abandoned glass bottles still find their way into the natural world, invading forests, lakes, rivers, and oceans.
Recently, researchers investigated the impact of discarded bottles and containers on ants, questioning whether these discarded byproducts of human activity are a “deadly trap or sweet home.”
The cannabis industry has put terpenes on the map due to how they affect the scent, taste, and medicinal properties of the product. However, terpenes aren’t exclusive to cannabis – they’re found in plants, fruits, and spices.
Terpenes can be used to apply flavor or fragrance to products like essential oils or shampoos (just look at the ingredients of your favorite Lush soap). They also play a vital role in how plants interact with the environment, providing plants with an odor-based defense mechanism, says a 2015 3 Biotech article.
Furthermore, many people feel their body odor is affected by using cannabis and consuming certain foods can alter how you smell – including meat and tomatoes.
So, could terpenes be the culprit behind certain human body odors?
Whether you’ve heard of them through an ad on TV, or a loved one gushing about how they didn’t know they have a sliver of DNA from another part of the world, more than 26 million individuals have taken an at-home DNA test as of last year.
At-home DNA tests can reveal information about your lineage, potential health risks, and serve as an interesting gift for a family member, but there have been recent concerns over the privacy and accuracy of these tests.
Notwithstanding these caveats, a recent Your DNA study reveals most individuals had positive experiences taking an at-home DNA test, and many of them went on to make beneficial lifestyle changes because of their results.
It only takes a few milligrams of a naturally occurring compound – or even a just few micrograms on a sliver of paper – to open your mind to a vibrant swirl of creativity and long-lasting personality changes.
While psychedelics have shown efficacy in treating various mental health conditions including anxiety, treatment-resistant depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder, they also carry the potential to help researchers further understand the interplay between various brain networks, says a 2018 Medical Hypothesis study.