J.D. Moyer

sci-fi writer, beat maker, self-experimenter

Month: September 2011

Reaction to Tim Ferriss’s Talk on Accelerated Learning (and Thoughts on his Rapid Rise to Fame)

Ferriss dispensing some armchair wisdom.

I recently attended Tim Ferriss’s talk “Accelerated Learning in Accelerated Times,” as presented as part of the Long Now Foundation’s Seminar series.  Jason W. from Proton Radio invited me — thanks Jason!

You can listen to the whole presentation here.  And here’s the Long Now blog post summarizing the talk.

I sensed the audience had a mixed reaction to Tim’s talk.  It was the first time he had given this particular presentation and it felt both rough and rushed.  Also, I think Ferriss’s rapid rise to celebrity status rubs some people the wrong way.  He can come off as arrogant sometimes.

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Modulating Testosterone Levels (for Men)

An article in yesterday’s New York Times claims that becoming a father reduces a man’s testosterone levels.  Is it true, and should dads be concerned?

Yes, and in most cases, no.

It’s been known for a long time that both long-term relationships and fatherhood are associated with lower testosterone (T) in human males, but the study cited by the New York Times is the first to show that the relationship is causal; becoming a father actually lowers T levels.  Furthermore, the more active and involved the dad (playing, cuddling, changing diapers, etc.), the greater the drop in T.

This sounds bad.  Most dads don’t want to trade off manliness for fatherhood.  Is that what the study implicates?

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B-Vitamins, Mood, and Methylation — It’s Complicated

B-vitamins, building blocks of mental health?  Or B.S.?

There’s a great deal of misinformation on the internet regarding B-vitamins and health.  I know this because I’ve read most of it.  During the 5 years or so when I was researching how to cure my own asthma, I devoured every text I could find regarding the physiological effects of specific vitamins and minerals — especially the B-vitamins.  Large doses of B-complex or individual B-vitamins are recommended to improve mood, reduce PMS, reduce asthma symptoms, reduce the risk of various cancers, reduce the risk of heart disease, fight yeast infections, ward off mosquitoes, and prevent or cure numerous other ailments.

Which of these claims are based on reputable clinical research, and which are bullshit?

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