Study says women think as rationally as men
Researchers have found that when it comes to moral decisions, women are no less cognitive than men when it comes weighing options. But according to new research published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, women also are more likely to have a gut-level negative reaction to causing harm to an individual.
Overall, though, the researchers concluded that contrary to conventional wisdom, women are not less rational or more emotional when making those decisions.
The data used in this meta-analysis came from 6,100 people answering 20 questions about various moral dilemmas. A wide array of decisions were studied, including murder, lying, and animal research. Researchers classified rational thoughts as cognitive evaluations of action outcomes, and emotional feelings as affective responses to harmful actions. Researchers found that in situations of harming one person for the benefit of a community, men and women responded similarly cognitively, but women had a stronger emotional response to causing harm than men did.
Researchers concluded that there was no gender difference when it came to utilitarian reasoning, but that women did experience more feelings of empathy when it came to harm.
Heavy Facebook use linked to "depressive feelings"
Comparison is the thief of joy, said Theodore Roosevelt. And social media has made comparisons with others that much easier. Now research at the University of Houston suggests that heavy use of Facebook can lead to “depressive feelings” because of the comparisons it encourages with the lives of others.
The researchers, who published their findings in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, conducted two studies, and both suggested that Facebook users felt depressed when they compared themselves to their peers. The researchers said that doesn’t necessarily mean that Facebook causes depression, but that “depressed feelings and spending lots of time on Facebook and comparing oneself to others tend to go hand in hand.”
According to those leading the study, a difference between traditional social comparisons, which tend to occur during face-to-face situations, and those on social media is that with the latter, a person has no influence over what another person may say about his or her life. Also, the fact that postings on Facebook tend to focus on the positive things in the lives of others can make people feel worse about their own lives.
The researchers believe that for people already experiencing emotional problems, being faced with only positive views of their friends’s lives may increase feelings of loneliness and isolation. They recommended that people living with depression should consider limiting their exposure to Facebook and other social media platforms.
The Twinkie is born: April 6,1930
A confection with a somewhat dubious reputation is born near Chicago when a plant manager at the Continental Baking Company creates new kind of treat he calls a “Twinkie.”
Jimmy Dewar had become frustrated that he could use the baking pans for sponge cakes only during the summer when strawberries are fresh. So he took sponge cakes and injected them with banana crème. Dewar called his invention a “Twinkie,” inspired by a billboard near the plant advertising “Twinkle Toe” shoes. The company put two Twinkies in one package and sells it for a nickel.
The filling was switched to vanilla during World War II when it was hard for the company to get bananas. Also, because the original ingredients of eggs, milk and butter allowed Twinkies to stay fresh for only a few days, they were replaced with less natural ones. That change, along with airtight packaging, gave Twinkies a shelf life that became legendary.
That longevity, along with the exposure the brand received as a sponsor of the popular “Howdy Doody Show” in the 1950s, made Twinkies a favorite desert packed in the school lunch boxes of Baby Boomers. And then, during the height of the Cold War between the U.S, and the Soviet Union, they were celebrated as food that could be stored forever in fallout shelters. More recently, in 1999, President Bill Clinton placed a package of Twinkies inside a millennium time capsule, describing it as an “object of enduring American symbolism.”
In truth, the life of a Twinkie, which stays fresh longer because it contains no dairy products, was estimated to be about 25 day. Also, it developed a reputation as the type of junk food that was helping Americans gain too much weight. Again, though, that reputation isn’t quite merited. Each Twinkie has about 150 calories, which isn’t that bad as far as snacks go. (You could eat two and still consume fewer calories than in a chocolate donut at Dunkin Donuts.) A Twinkie does, however, contain 4.5 grams of fat, including 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 19 grams of sugar and no fiber.
So Twinkies aren’t recommended as a daily treat, although, according to legend, their inventor, Jimmy Dewar, ate 40,000 of them during his lifetime. He lived to be 88 before dying in 1985.
Over the years, chefs have done some exotic things with the iconic confection. It’s been deep-fried, converted into wedding cakes and served with sushi and tiramisu.
But the basic Twinkie endures, even surviving the bankruptcy of its parent company, Hostess Brands, in 2012. Under new ownership, Twinkies returned to grocery store shelves a few years ago, although they had been changed a bit. Their shelf life is now 45 days, about three weeks longer than before.
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