The problem with cellphones and love hormones.
Mobile phones have been blamed for all sorts of modern ailments, from chronic stress to brain tumours.
Now medical researchers in Austria and Egypt have added yet another condition to the list. The conclusions of their study, published in the Central European Journal of Urology, indicate that intensive daily exposure to a switched-on mobile phone could be linked to erectile dysfunction.
The researchers came to this conclusion by studying two groups of men over the course of six years. The 20 men in the first group suffered from erectile dysfunction, while the 10 men in the second reported having no sexual health problems.
Each participant in the study filled out a questionnaire to record his daily mobile phone use.
The researchers noted that there was no significant difference between the two groups in terms of average age, weight, height, smoking habits or testosterone levels.
However, a difference was observed in the amount of time the men spent with their phone turned on and in their hand or pocket.
Those suffering from erectile dysfunction carried a switched-on mobile phone 4.4 hours per day on average, compared to just 1.8 hours per day for the men who did not experience impotence.
However, the results of the study should be taken with a grain of salt. As the researchers stress, additional studies must be carried out with larger sample groups before the evidence may be called conclusive. – AFP Relaxnews
‘Love’ hormone could lead to dishonesty
The problem with cellphones and love hormones.Ocytocin, known as the love hormone, plays a key role in the development of trust and loving bonds. But a recent study suggests that those exposed to the hormone may also become more prone to lying, particularly in a setting where it may benefit those around them.
The hormone, which is involved in the reproductive process and released during childbirth, is often associated with some of the most positive human behaviours. It is thought to play a crucial role in bringing about orgasm, encouraging social recognition, and strengthening bonds between mothers and their infants.
However, according to a study published by researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel and the University of Amsterdam in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), the hormone could also lead to dishonesty.
Sixty volunteers were divided into two groups: the first group inhaled oxytocin, while the rest received a placebo.
All of the subjects were told to play a game in which they predicted the results of a coin toss and reported their success to the test’s organisers.
In one test, the subjects were told they could win money for themselves and their entire test group, while in another, they were told they were playing just for themselves.
Researchers observed that in the former test, when the interest of the entire group was at stake, the subjects who received oxytocin were more likely to cheat.
Under the influence of the hormone, the subjects lied to organisers more frequently about the success of their predictions in order to earn more money for the group.
When only individual winnings were at stake, there was no significant difference in the frequency of lying between the subjects in the control group and those who took oxytocin.
The researchers say their findings point out once and for all that oxytocin is not “the moral molecule” it is often thought to be. “Oxytocin is causing a more general shift from self-interest to group-interest,” said co-author Carsten de Dreu, as reported in The Scientist. “It’s simplistic and wrong to call oxytocin a ‘moral’ molecule.” – AFP Relaxnews