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She Wasted Away to 40 PoundsBut When She Pleaded the Internet for Help, Something Amazing Happened

This actress was near death, but then she made one video that changed everything…

As stated by Laurie Halse Anderson,There is no magic cure, no making it all go away forever. There are only small steps upward; an easier day, an unexpected laugh, a mirror that doesn’t matter anymore.

ActressRachael Farrokh knows that reality all too well as a sufferer of anorexia. She weighed a mere 40 pounds at her thinnest, and her husband had to quit his job to take care of her around the clock.That’s when she knew it was time to get help. The 37-year-old has been struggling with the eating disorder for many years, but it took a brush with death for her to know it was time to seek treatment.

She created a heartbreaking video explaining her dire situation and pleading for help from anyone who would be willing to offer it.

And they responded in a miraculous way. Strangers from around the world launched a fundraiser for her treatment which raised nearly $200,000.

The money was exactly what she needed to get medical help at a Portugese clinic where specialists worked with her to gain weight and muscle mass as well as the mental strength required to overcome the life-crippling disorder.

That’s why so many attempts at helping her had failed in the past. According to Rachael, the caring specialists at the Portugese clinic finally realized that the brain had to come along with the body.

Plumping somebody up with a feeding tube won’t do any good if the mind continues to reject the treatment.

In an interview with NBC-4 she said, “I was finally treated with respect, and I didn’t know I deserved it.” She explains what it feels like to finally feel like she’s becoming whole again, as she slowly conquers the disease that has tried to conquerher life:

It’s only been 6 months since she began the program, and she is already gaining back a significant amount of the weight she lost. Her radiant glow and fuller cheekbones are finally starting to shine forth a happier and healthier Rachael, a side of herself she hasn’t seen in years.

Standing up is still a challenge, but she’s continued to achieve marvelous feats in such a short period of time. Rachael even participated in a D.C. march raising awareness for others suffering from eating disorders.

Her battle isn’t over, but she’s come so far and is eternally grateful for thegracious financial and emotional support she’s received in her painful journey of recovery.

The stigma surrounding eating disorders has been one of vain girls who just want to be skinny. People want to tell you, “Just eat,” or “Stop throwing up.” There’s a mentality that you’ve done this to yourself, which only perpetuates self-loathing and self-punishment through diving deeper in into the warped relationship with food and body image.

Rachael is so thankful for thestrangers who were kind enough to hear her plea and respond with such overwhelming support. She’s not in this alone. She’s now got a band of fighters along for the rocky road thatis the journey to loving yourself as your are.

That void of unworthiness is where eating disorders start, and the the fullness of self-acceptance is where they end.

She’s not there quite yet, but Rachael has her eyes on the prize for that miraculous day when she sees a reflection in the mirror of a woman she dearly lovesjust the way she is.

 

Read more: http://www.faithit.com/she-wasted-away-to-40-pounds-but-when-she-pleaded-the-internet-for-help-something-amazing-happened/

The 25 Strangest Phobias You Could Have

With the exception of one person we’re all afraid of something. Some of us however, whether due to a traumatic experience or just bad luck, have fears that could be classified as being a bit more irrational. Although some of the phobias on this list are just pop culture jokes (we’ll let you know which ones), for the most part they’re not. These are the 25 strangest phobias you could have.

25. Ablutophobia

If you have ablutophobia then you had better go grab some deodorant because you are probably too scared to take a bath or clean yourself.

24. Ergophobia

In what is probably one of the most convenient phobias on this list ergophobia is the fear of work or the workplace environment. On a serious note however, psychologists believe it is a combination of various fears such as failing at assigned tasks, social anxiety, and public speaking.

23. Nomophobia

Short for no-mobile-phone phobia, this is the constant fear of not having service and according to researchers in the UK a whopping 50% of people have it. Third world…we apologize.

22. Philophobia

Although butterflies in the stomach are often associated with love, for someone with philophobia those butterflies are more like deadly scorpions, as they are petrified of falling in love. Unfortunately many people in this category end up living a life of solitude and fear of commitment.

21. Somniphobia

Also known as hypnophobia, this is the abnormal fear of falling asleep. Oftentimes it can be the result of people feeling as though they are losing control and nightmares have been known to cause it as well.

20. Heliophobia

In a sort of modern day vampirism, heliophobia is actually defined as fear of the sun. Although it sounds harmless, it can actually be quite serious and lead to vitamin D deficiency as a result of staying indoors.

19. Chaetophobia

Although some people with chaetophobia only fear loose or detached hair, others can be terrified by the hairs on their very own bodies.

18. Arachibutyrophobia

Although you’ve probably heard this one thrown around, the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth is actually a made up phobia. It was first mentioned in thePeanutscomic strip and pop culture has run with it ever since.

17. Haphephobia

Whatever you do just make sure you don’t get too close to anyone with haphephobia…it’s the fear of being touched.

16. Oikophobia

Imagine being scared of your toaster…and your oven, and your refrigerator, and every other household appliance you own. For people with oikophobia, c’est la vie.

15. Coulrophobia

Generally found in children, coulrophobia is the fear of clowns. Some phobias are just so sad.

14. Aibohphobia

For those of you who don’t know, a palindrome is any word that is spelled the same both forwards and backwards. “Racecar” would be a good example. Aibohphobia is the fear of palindromes, which is intentionally a palindrome itself. This, however, is yet another made up phobia created by computer nerds in the early 80s.

13. Neophobia

Generally found in the elderly, neophobia is classified as the fear of new things and in its milder form consists of an unwillingness to part with old habits.

12. Hylophobia

It’s the irrational fear of wood, forests, and trees and as with most of the phobias on this list it is often the result of some long forgotten traumatic experience such as being beaten with a piece of wood or attacked in a forest.

11. Hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia

The longest town name in the world belongs to Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch in the United Kingdom and if you have hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia you might want to steer clear of that place. Why? Because you are afraid of long words. Seriously though, this is a joke phobia that often gets thrown around on the internet. There are no recorded cases…as of yet.

10. Decidophobia

While some of you may just be indecisive and apathetic, there are people out there who are genuinely terrified of making decisions, they are known as decidophobes.

9. Gephyrophobia

If you have this phobia just make sure you don’t live close to the river because you would probably be too scared to cross any of its bridges. Some cities, however, provide services where they will actually drive your car across the bridge for you.

8. Descendophobia

For someone with descendophobia, walking down stairs or inclines can be a terrifying experience and many times they may get dizzy as well. On the other hand you could also have ascendophobia – fear of moving upwards.

7. Trypophobia

If looking at the picture to the left gives you chills then you may be a trypophobic, or someone scared of clustered holes usually found on various biological organisms.

6. Luposlipaphobia

First coined in aFar Sidecomic strip, this joke phobia has become somewhat of a pop culture phenomenon. In case you’re out of the know, it involves the fear of being pursued by timber wolves around a kitchen table while wearing socks on a newly waxed floor.

5. Chronophobia

One of the stranger phobias on this list, chronophobia is the fear of time passing. Not surprisingly it is often found mostly in prison inmates or the elderly but it can also occur in people who experience a lot of stress and anxiety.

4. Phagophobia

This one could truly be hard to live with. Phagophobia is the fear of swallowing and in some cases it can actually lead to weight loss and malnutrition.

3. Omphalophobia

Is it an innie or an outie? If you suffer from omphalophobia you probably don’t know and you don’t care because belly buttonsterrifyyou.

2. Panphobia

Also known as omniphobia, this generalized fear describes the condition of fearingeverythingand is often described as constantly dreading some “vague and persistent unknown evil”.

1. Phobophobia

It’s hard to believe but this is literally a phobia of phobias. If you managed to get through this list though, you’re probably in the clear on this one.

Read more: http://list25.com/the-25-strangest-phobias-you-could-have/

25 Methods for Killing With Your Bare Hands

[WARNING: This list contains graphic descriptions of techniques for killing.] Sometimes when you are threatened with physical violence, a weapon to defend yourself with is not always available. Your hands, however, are always with you, and can be as lethal as any weapon. Below are a list of attacks that will almost certainly result in death. Remember, these techniques should never be used except in a life or death situation for self-defense.

Techniques 1 – 5

Paris Fight2

1. TEMPLE – A very susceptibile vital spot. If struck with sufficient force, may cause unconsciousness or death.

2. NASION – This is the summit of the nose. If struck with sufficient force may cause death.

3. PHILTRUM – This is the area between the upper lip and the bottom of the nose. Attack to this area may also cause unconsciousness or death.

4. HOOK TO JAW – A powerful hook punch to the front side of jaw may snap an enemy’s neck. Fatal.

5. ADAM’S APPLE – A sharp blow here may cause enemy to asphyxiate.

Techniques 6 – 10

Fight-Club

6. SMALL OF BACK – A very strong blow to the small of the back can cause the backbone to break.

7. TESTICLES – The strong, focused pain of a vicious low blow may cause shock, resulting in death.

8. BASE OF CEREBELLUM – A powerful blow to the nape of the neck, causing mortal damage.

9. COCCYX – A powerful blow to the tail bone. Fatal.

10. FULL NELSON – Stand behind the enemy, put your arms under his, and lock your hands behind his head. Bending the neck forward may either break neck, asphyxiate enemy, or cut of supply of spinal fluid to brain, causing brain damage or death.

Techniques 11 – 15

Geek Fight

11. HALF NELSON – Again, standing behind enemy, but one arm is used to pin one of enemy’s arms.

12. BRAIN BUSTER – Bend enemy over towards you, placing him in a headlock. Grab the back of his belt, and haul him into the air, vertical, upside-down. Allow yourself to fall backward, landing on your enemy’s head, which will absorb your combined weight. Most effective on concrete or gravel.

13. RUSSIAN OMELET – Cross enemy’s legs. Fold enemy by pinning his shoulders to ground upside-down and placing his legs above him. Sit on his legs, folding the bass of the spine. Fatal.

14. HEART PUNCH – A strongman’s attack, it is simply a powerful blow to the heart. (Many years ago, the wrestler Ox killed an opposing wrestler with this attack.)

15. UPPERCUT – An upward strike to the bottom of the jaw with the heel of the hand, causing the enemy’s head to snap backward. May shatter vertabrae. Fatal.

Techniques 16 – 20

Wall Fight

16. ABDOMEN – A substantial blow to this area may rupture a vital organ, causing death.

17. RIB CAGE – A vicious shattering of the rib cage may cause grave internal bleeding.

18. HEAD-TO-WALL PUNCH – A swift, hard, cold-cock punch to an enemy’s face while he is standing near a wall may drive his head into it, causing the back of the skull to shatter fatally.

19. PINNED DROP KICK – Standing behind enemy, holding his arms straight back. A drop kick to the back without releasing arms may severe spine, causing death.

20. HEAD WRENCH – Grabbing an enemy’s head by the mouth and the back of the skull, then twisting with a sudden, violent jerk to rend vertabrae, may easily cause death.

Techniques 21 – 25

Barfight

21. CHOKE HOLD – Once a favorite of law enforcement officials, has often proved deadly. The right arm goes over the enemy’s right shoulder, and grips the back of the head. The left arm comes over his left shoulder, reaches across neck, and grabs own right forearm. With enough pressure applied, causes brain damage or death.

22. HEAD YANK – Bend enemy forward, grab head, and pull back with convincing force. May seperate delicate vertebrae, causing death.

23. EARS – Coming up from behind an enemy and cupping the hands in a clapping motion over the victims ears can kill him immediately. The vibrations caused from the clapping motion will burst his eardrums, and cause internal bleeding in the brain.

24. KIDNEYS – A large nerve that branches off to the spinal cord comes very close to the skin at the kidneys. A direct blow with the knife edge of your hand can cause death.

25. EYES – Use your fingers in a V-shape and attack in gouging motion.

Final Note

300Px-The Scream-1

Attacking is a primary factor. A fight was never won by defensive action. Attack with all of your strength. At any point or any situation, some vulnerable point on your enemies body will be open for attack. Do this while screaming as screaming has two purposes:

1. To frighten and confuse your enemy, and

2. To allow you to take a deep breath which, in turn, will put more oxygen in your blood stream. Your balance and balance of your enemy are two important factors; since, if you succeed in making your enemy lose his balance, the chances are nine to one that you can kill him in your next move. The best over-all stance is where your feet are spread about shoulders width apart, with your right foot about a foot ahead of the left. Both arms should be bent at the elbows parallel to each other. Stand on the balls of your feet and bend your waist slightly. Similar to a boxer’s crouch. Employing a sudden movement or a scream or yell can throw your enemy off-balance.

There are many more ways to kill and injure an enemy, but these should work best for the average person. This is meant only as information and I would not recommend that you use this for a simple High School Brawl. Use these methods only, in your opinion, if your life is in danger. Any one of these methods could very easily kill or cause permanent damage to someone.

If you are forced to use these techniques, you may also find these two lists helpful:

Top 10 Tips To Commit The Perfect Crime, and
Top 10 Prison Survival Tips

Source: The Anarchist’s Cookbook

Read more: http://listverse.com/2007/11/11/25-methods-for-killing-with-your-bare-hands/

26 Struggles That All Germaphobes Will Understand

1. Any time you encounter one of these.

2. The entire public bathroom experience, really.

3. Especially trying to figure out how to escape after you’re done.

Some guy just went straight from the urinal to the door and you expect me to touch the handle?

4. Or going to the bathroom and then realizing that there’s no soap left.

Brb shaking in terror.

5. And since you have no control of other people’s bathroom habits, this is always a fear.

It only takes one person to contaminate an entire group.

6. You’ve got such a large supply of Purell that you’re running out of closet space.

The Lonely Island / Via college-life-crisis.tumblr.com

7. Dealing with people who cough or sneeze DIRECTLY INTO THEIR HAND.

TLC / Via offcolortv.com

And then don’t wash it. WHY?

8. When a friend asks if you want to just use their cup for your drink.

Hahahaha no.

9. When you’re really thirsty but there are only public water fountains around.

So many strange mouths.

10. When someone double dips before you get a chance to have any chips yourself.

NBC / Via youtube.com

Because now the whole tub of onion dip is ruined 🙁

11. Dealing with people who think the five second rule is totally valid.

Greg Williams / Via en.wikipedia.org

No. No amount of seconds is appropriate.

12. You have at least one item of dinnerware that you will no longer use because your pet got to it once.

Damn it, Fido! That’s daddy’s plate.

13. Trying to find the balance between really wanting puppy kisses and being disgusted by your puppy’s tongue.

So cute…but ew.

14. When you’re making s’mores with friends but no one brought skewers so you’re expected to use a stick.

Nope. No campfire desserts for you.

15. Cooking anything takes forever because you spend half of the time making sure everything is washed properly.

16. Attempting to take up gardening only to realize that NO THERE IS TOO MUCH DIRT.

17. Accidentally stretching out your shirt from using it so often to open door handles.


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18. This is what happens whenever you try to use one of these trash bins.

Good enough.

19. Taking out the trash basically requires a hazmat suit.

20. AND you need to make sure one hand stays clean or else you won’t be able to open the door to get back inside.


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21. Scrubbing the floor for hours and still not feeling satisfied.

22. When you’re about to leave the house but accidentally touch something gross so you have to turn around and go back.

ABC / Via reactiongifs.com

And you try to convince yourself it wasn’t that bad, and you can make it, but no, no you can’t.

23. Needing to find something to protect your hands when you’re out getting groceries.


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24. Trying to figure out how to ride the subway without touching anything.

God I hope this plunger came straight from the store and not this woman’s bathroom.

25. Basically, you do this so often that your skin is drier than the Sahara.

26. Oh, and after seeing this headline, you’ll probably need a self-imposed weeklong quarantine.

OH MY GOD NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/adamdavis/experiences-that-all-germaphobes-understand

Kristen Stewart Is The New Face Of Chanel

Cooper Neill / Getty Images

Karl Lagerfeld chose Kristen Stewart, of all people, to be the new face of Chanel.

Demi Lovato got real with Kit Hoover of Access Hollywood Live about her drug addiction as a teen:

“Something I’ve never talked about before, but with my drug use I could hide it to where I would sneak drugs. I couldn’t go without 30 minutes to an hour without cocaine and I would bring it on airplanes,” she revealed. “I would smuggle it basically and just wait until everyone in first class would go to sleep and I would do it right there. I’d sneak to the bathroom and I’d do it. That’s how difficult it got and that was even with somebody [with me], I had a sober companion, somebody who was watching me 24/7 and living with me [and] I was able to hide it from them as well.”

Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images

Kate Winslet had a baby son yesterday.

Ethan Miller / Getty Images

Just in case you missed Speidi’s TV special this week, the main take-away was Spencer’s claim that MTV asked him to leave poor Heidi at the altar. (Also, that he admitted to gaining 50 pounds. It happens.)

Stuart C. Wilson / Getty Images

Ben Whishaw is to play Freddie Mercury in a new movie.

Kim Kardashian showed off her weight loss on the cover of Us Weekly. Kongrats.

Adam Brody was caught kissing Leighton Meester, d’aww.

Matthew Knowles says he’s not a deadbeat dad.

Drew Barrymore is expecting a baby girl.

Angelina Jolie flew a plane illegally.

Cameron Diaz just bought an apartment in NYC.

Snooki is quitting reality TV.

Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/whitneyjefferson/kristen-stewart-is-the-new-face-of-chanel

Environmental Factors Experienced By A Man Could Impact His Grandchildren

There has been increasing interest in the idea that lifestyle choices or stressful events during a persons life might not just impact an individual at the time, but could send out a ripple that also affects their children. Known as epigenetics, the suggestion is that environmental factors and traumatic events can physically change the way a person’s genes are expressed, and that this alteration can then be passed on if and when that person has children.

But a new study claims to have found that its not just changes to the DNA during a fathers life that can be passed on:Incredibly,changes to a particular protein associated with DNA can also be inherited, not just by their childrenbut also their grandchildren.

These findings are remarkable because they indicate that information other than DNA is involved in heritability, says Sarah Kimmins, one of the lead authors of the paper published in Science.

Epigenetics has largelyfocused on how life events from smoking to emotional and physical trauma can change howand what genes in a persons DNA are expressed. This expression, and thus the production of proteins, is generally controlled by what are known as methyl groups. These chemical tagsattach to particular regions of DNA and act like a dimmer switch, turning up and down the rate at which certain genes are expressed. Evidence suggests that life events can alter where these methyl group attach to DNA, and that this can then be passed on from parent to child.

The new research, however, decided to focus on another aspect of DNA. When the vastly long molecule is packaged into cells, DNA is wound around a particular protein called a histone, which effectively acts like a spool. Histones are able to control which sections of DNA get copied and expressed, depending on which parts of the thread are allowed to unravel.Its already been established that environmental factors, such as diet and smoking, can change the structure of histones, but the researchers wanted to find out whetherthese changes had any impact on a father’schildren.

To test this, the researchers created mice in which they had altered the information that codes for the structure of histones during sperm cell formation, and then looked to see how this impacted their offspring. What they found was that these slight changes in the histones created offspring that were both more susceptible to birth defectsand had lower rates of survival overall. In addition to that, the effect didnt just directly impact the offspring, but was even felt two generations later.

“The study highlights the critical role that fathers play in the health of their children and even grand-children,”explained Kimmins. “Since chemical modifications on histones are susceptible to environmental exposures, the work opens new avenues of investigation for the possible prevention and treatment of diseases of various kinds, affecting health across generations.”

This fascinating piece of research adds yet another aspect to epigenetics. However,its important to note that while they might have been able to show that altered histones can impact offspring, and that histones can be modified by environmental factors, there is still a bridge missing between the two.

Read more: http://www.iflscience.com/health-and-medicine/environmental-factors-experienced-man-could-impact-their-grand-children

17 Moody Cats Dressed Up As Santa

1. “I hope you like your presents or whatever.”

2. “Look, I stayed up all night going down chimneys, please turn off the Mariah Carey.”


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3. “Okay, I had too much egg nog and got lost last night but that doesn’t mean I have to hand in my uniform OKAY?”

4. “My name is Santa Claws. I don’t even like puns.”

5. “You tell me you don’t like that sweater TO MY FACE.”


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6. “I’m just…so…tired…”

7. “Key to surviving Christmas Eve? Remaining chill at all costs.”


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8. “No, I will not take this outfit off. I have earned this uniform.”

9. “I don’t know why I didn’t decide to go minimalist sooner.”

10. “I’ve expended all of my Christmas cheer, okay?”


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11. “Is this guy kidding me with this crap?”

12. “YEAH I LOOK GOOD IN RED.”


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13. “Jingle jingle, bitches.”

14. “I resent these lights with every fiber of my being.”


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15. “I don’t remember asking for a friend for Christmas.”

16. “Look, I don’t appreciate you putting my outfit back ON when I was asleep.”


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17. “Okay, fine. One last MERRY CHRISTMAS!!”


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Read more: http://buzzfeed.com/chelseamarshall/moody-cats-dressed-up-as-santa

New Fossil Suggests We Had A Gibbon-Like Early Ancestor

Humans and other great apes diverged from smaller, “lesser”apes like gibbons about 17 million years ago based on molecular data. Its thought that our common ancestor was great ape-like, and that gibbons are a specialized, dwarfed lineage that evolved from big-bodied apes. However, a new fossil small-bodied ape discovered in Spain and dating back just 11.6 million years features characteristics of both groups. They named it Pliobates cataloniae. The work, published in Science this week, suggests that the last common ancestor of all apes looked more like lesser apes and less like great apes.

First, some names to keep track of. Todays great apes (or hominids) consist of humans, bonobos, chimps, gorillas, and orangutans; meanwhile, gibbons and siamangs make up the small-bodied apes (or hylobatids). Together, were the hominoids and were all tailless. Hominoids and Old World monkeys like baboons and macaques split roughly 25 million years ago.

“The main implication of Pliobates is that small-bodied primates played a more important role in the evolution of living apes, including humans, than previously thought,”David Alba from the Institut Catal de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont (ICP) tells IFLScience. “They have been discounted in this regard because they lack the newer, derived features of living hominoids, being generally considered as preceding the divergence between Old World monkeys and apes.”

On January 3, 2011, a team of paleontologists unearthed the first of 70 bones and fragmentsseveral teeth, most of a skull, and part of a left arm from the Abocador de Can Mata stratigraphic series in Catalonia on the northeastern Iberian Peninsula. The deposits are 11.6 million years old, and back then, this modern-day landfill was a warm, humid forest. After analyzing the fossils and using CT scans to create virtual reconstructions, Alba and colleagues discovered that the remains belonged to a never-before-seen species of extinct primate. It has a mosaic of primitive characteristics and derived features resembling thatof hominoids today.

“The origin of gibbons is a mystery because of the lack of fossil record, but until now most scientists thought that their last common ancestor with hominids must have been large, because all of the undoubted fossil hominoids found so far were large-bodied,” Alba says in a statement. Until Pliobates, all the small-bodied, 5- to 15-kilogram fossils found had a body plan that was too primitive to be closely related to living hominoids, and some researchers thought that small-bodied apes are dwarfed versions of great apes. “This find overturns everything,” he adds.

With an estimated body mass of 4 to 5 kilograms, Pliobates was about the size of a small gibbon. Its brain size implies a monkey-like degree of complexity similar to that of gibbons, but its brain-to-body-mass ratio is more similar to that of a great ape. Microscopic wear on its primitive teeth indicates a diet of mostly soft, ripe fruit. While Pliobates retains some primitive characteristics, its forearm anatomy specifically the wrist bones and the elbow joint boasts the basic design seen in living hominoids. It sported adaptations for cautious climbing and clambering through the canopy, and it could walk on the tops of tree branches as well as hang from below.

Furthermore, based on a phylogenetic analysis with more than 300 dental and skeletal characters, Pliobates is a stem hominoid close to the divergence between lesser and great apes. The new genus name, Pliobates, is a contraction of the genus names Pliopithecus (“more ape”) and Hylobates (“the one that walks in the woods or in the trees”), and its an allusion to this mix of features. The species name refers to the location it was first discovered. The specimen is also nicknamed Laia, a diminutive of Eulalia the patron of Barcelona, whose name means well spoken, eloquent.”

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Read more: http://www.iflscience.com/plants-and-animals/new-fossil-suggests-we-had-gibbon-early-ancestor

6 ‘Harmless’ Things That Are Actually Signs Of Major Health Problems

WARNING: if you’re a hypochondriac, you probably shouldn’t read this!

In movies, sometimes a character will interrupt a conversation with a cough that seems innocent at the time, but sure enough, a few scenes later, everyone’s at that character’s funeral lamenting, “We should have seen the signs!”

This is, of course, just a plot device, and it doesn’t bear any resemblance to the real world…or does it? One might think your body would tell you if it’s dying — “HEY, LISTEN UP! GO TO THE DOCTOR” — but oftentimes, it warns us in the most frustratingly subtle ways. Here are some symptoms that may seem harmless at first…but could end up spelling your doom.

Weak teeth = bad stomach

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Despite brushing, keeping soda out of your diet, and doing virtually everything your dentist tell you to do, is your enamel still too weak? Well, then you might have an acid reflux problem in your stomach! While sugary treats wear down the enamel on the front of your teeth, acid from your stomach may be eroding the backs!

Hair loss = prostate cancer

There may be a link between hair loss and prostate cancer in men. Studies show that men with moderate balding are 83% more likely to get prostate cancer down the line. But how does hair protect you from prostate cancer? It doesn’t! The real culprit is testosterone. Too much of it is the true cause of balding AS WELL AS problems with the prostate.

Changes in handwriting = Parkinson’s disease

Write a sentence down on a piece of paper. Now write it nine more times. Notice any noticeable differences? If you see that each time you wrote the sentence the words got smaller and more crowded together, it could be an early sign of Parkinson’s. You see Parkinson’s causes the nerves to stop producing dopamine, which causes stiffness in your hands. This can affect your handwriting.

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Long pointer finger + shorter ring finger = schizophrenia

If your pointer finger is longer than your ring finger, it may be an indicator of schizophrenia. A recent study confirms that men with this sort of digit ratio are likely to have a disturbed hormonal balance that could also lead to schizophrenia.

Inability to calculate tip = Alzheimer’s

Is the reason you’re not tipping well enough not the fault of the service you received, but because you’re too afraid to do the calculations? The inability to perform simple math equations could be a early warning sign of Alzheimer’s. One brain fart might not mean much, but if it happens on a regular basis, it could be a signal for memory problems later in life.

Snoring = heart disease

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If you snore, you may actually be keeping up you partner with your weakening heart. Sleep apnea is linked to the thickening of arteries in the neck, which can lead to strokes and heart attacks more than commonly thought heart detriments (smoking or increased weight).

Of course, these symptoms can be caused by any number of things, so don’t go buying a plot in the cemetery just yet. Consult a doctor if your symptoms are really troubling you, no matter how small. You might come off looking like a crazy person, but a little piece of mind is better than freaking out over it.

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/harmless-symptoms/

Early Trials for Next-Generation Artificial Skin Are a Success

Over 5,000 skin grafts are performed each year in the United States alone. Most of these grafts come from the wounded individual or  a donor. There are currently few ways of manufacturing artificial skin, but there are drawbacks because it doesn’t act precisely like real skin. That may change, as a Swiss lab has successfully tested an artificial skin that is biologically functional.  The results come from Daniela Marino of University Children’s Hospital Zurich and were published in Science Translational Medicine.

Skin is the largest organ in the body and it has the very important task of protecting the body against contaminants. It isn’t just a watertight solid tissue, it is very dynamic and full of hair follicles and sweat glands, which help regulate body temperature. When skin is lost, either to burns, injuries, or extensive surgery, it needs to be replaced as quickly as possible with a graft. 

The best matches come from other parts of the patients body, but if enough good skin isn’t available, artificial skin can be used. These types of grafts are typically made from collagen scaffolding and coated with stem cells that grow over the course of a few weeks into skin cells. 

When the body is injured, fluids accumulate in the area to try and help the healing process. The body’s natural lymphatic system is able to redirect these fluids back into the blood stream, but artificial skin does not have these vessels. Without being able to regulate fluid buildup, the graft could die and need to be replaced, creating another lengthy waiting process.

This new study, performed on mouse models, showed that an artificial skin actually can be pretty close to the real thing. A gel-like scaffolding was populated with blood and lymph cells. After a period of incubation, the skin was grafted onto a test subject and actually did regulate fluid content.

This new technique has drawn in a bit of criticism, particularly due to its practicality. While there are definitely some burn victims that lack enough healthy tissue to transplant, most people in need of a graft can easily get the skin from elsewhere on their body with no rejection and full function. Fluid buildup is managed in other ways, so it could be difficult to get this artificial skin to a point where it is economically competitive with other treatments. 

However, Dr. Marino remains confident that this new skin could change lives. Some graft patients, like diabetics and those with vascular disease, do not respond typically to skin placed from other areas of the body. There are not currently any human trials scheduled for this artificial skin, though she hopes they will be coming soon, though there is no word if future studies will try to link the skin to the nervous system as well.

Read more: http://www.iflscience.com/health-and-medicine/early-trials-next-generation-artificial-skin-are-success