Skeptics with a K: Episode #167

Car crashes, electro-smog, mindfulness, and lacrosse. Plus drinking goo, doing the dishes, insta-cancer, and NutriBlitz. Bringing consciousness to the present moment, it’s Skeptics with a K.

  1. #1 by Chikoppi on February 26, 2016 - 06:20

    Re: efficacy of mindfulness. You might consider asking Steve Novella to weigh in. I believe he has discussed the neurological effects of mindfulness practice at some point in the past, though I don’t recall the particular context.

    Climbing in a suit. Affectation become madness!

  2. #2 by Sara on February 26, 2016 - 20:34

    I have a touch of OCD, and it’s always worse when I get anxious. I tend to fixate on a certain train of thought and will sort of get caught in a loop. Often times, listening to a podcast can help me break that cycle (depending on the podcast), but it helps to be doing something with my hands… so sometimes I color. Sometimes, I clean house or shoot hoops, but still: I’m an adult who colors.

    I don’t know what a good methodology for testing the benefits of what essentially is a thought exercise would be (the “mindfulness,” not the coloring), but with no evidence that my habit is harmful, I’m probably going to keep doing it. I feel like I’m using it as a crutch, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    I would also be interested in hearing Novella’s take on this.

  3. #3 by Trebor on February 27, 2016 - 10:58

    I had not heard of Huel before, I’ve been eating Joylent which is not too bad.
    So I guess I’m just as weird as Mike.
    Will have to check their website to see if they have any woo from nutritionists on it.

  4. #4 by Black Knight No. 3 on February 28, 2016 - 17:38

    An excellent discussion on mindfulness, not for the subject of the discussion but on the way it was conducted. It was clear that there were different points of view but with everyone not knowing all the facts, it was good to hear the team going through the sort of debate that someone might have, even with themselves.

    This was way better than anything on the SGU (which I also enjoy BTW) which always feels a little too clinical what with everyone always in perfect agreement.

  5. #5 by Jason on February 29, 2016 - 08:44

    With regards to mindfulness, I think the first thing I want to do is not call it that for now just to move the stigma of the world away from the point of my message, however as good skeptics we would be better than this.

    Anyway, I have Asperger’s and ADD and all the associated mental problems that come along with this. Normally by the end of a normal but hard day I have what I call “itchy brain” and this is exactly as it sounds, all I want to do is dig into my prefrontal cortex and give it a good scratch in the same manner as a dog when it finds the perfect shaped tree or puddle of mud n poop. Other times its much worse that this. Like someone else said I can get repeating thoughts in my head, this makes sleep impossible, the symptoms go on and on…. Im lucky in some ways as I know when a certain part of my brain is itching, or making a noise, I know that it means I need to do a certain thing, or it means I need to take my meds or prepare for a bout of insomnia (yes I am aware the brain can’t actually be itchy, this is just the sensation I feel)

    So what I do is the equivalent of hitting ctrl-alt-del but doing thinks like coloring, going for a run, doing what ever I can to shift everything about, ive learnt to build bike wheels, that works brilliantly as for it to be successful the wheel has to be perfect…

    I don’t think anyone that is neurotypical would quite understand this, I think the best analogy would be imagine that you are a little bit drunk or high and need to get sober quickly, better yet, try be in a room with 100 people all talking at the same volume and you need to tune into just one voice… that what these little tricks can help to do…. call them what ever you like.

    I think it was Alice said that none of these are actually a treatment or do anything to fix anything, its just short term relief.

  6. #6 by Andrew May on February 29, 2016 - 14:29

    Email sent, Marsh.

  7. #7 by Alex Murdoch on February 29, 2016 - 20:52

    Excellent episode. I think one of the things I love best about episodes like this is where there is a real conversation going on and exchange of opinions. Thanks for letting us listen in.

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