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The Scary Facts About your Deep Mind

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Today we're going to learn about 13 creepy facts about your deep mind

Number 1: cannibals in your brain

What does your brain do when it runs out of food, well instead of sitting there starving your brain does something really bizarre, according to a 2011 study from the journal Cell press your neurons start eating each other but not because they have to your brain actually stores fat sources to feed your neurons but instead of eating those fats your neurons attack each other, why well because it sends alarms throughout your brain and it makes you feel even hungrier in other words when your neurons start eating themselves it pushes your brain into a state of emergency because the faster you get food into your system the less damage your neurons do to themselves. 

Number 2: a negative subconscious

Is your brain an optimist or a pessimist, according to a 2013 article from Psychology Today, most people think of themselves as optimists they have a positive outlook on themselves their jobs and their futures but this is a textbook example of something called a positivity bias, if you have a positivity bias it means you see things as more positive than they actually are you think you're funnier than you are you assume you're smarter than you are and in the same way people believe they're more optimistic than they really are but the truth is deep down most brains are overwhelmingly negative of the thousands of thoughts you have on a daily basis 70% are usually negative, so even if you think you're optimistic your brain begs to differ.

Number 3: your better half

How much of your brain do you need to live your life and be yourself, it turns out you only need half, in 1888 a German physiologist developed a procedure called a hemisphere ectomy it's where a surgeon basically removes 50% of the patient's brain separating the right and left hemispheres this sounds extremely dangerous right, how could anyone possibly survive that but it sounds worse than it is, in fact surgeons have performed hundreds of these surgeries and most patients have no noticeable differences in their personalities or memories yeah they do struggle with some things like speech or dexterity but you'd be surprised how much you can do with only half a brain.

Number 4: the strangest tastebuds

Most people know that your mouth is coated with small sensory organs called taste buds those organs tell you when something is sweet like a piece of candy or salty like a pretzel but did you know that your mouth isn't the only part of your body with a sense of taste your brain has its fair share of taste receptors - in the hypothalamus for example your brain uses taste receptors to sense changes in your blood sugar compared to your mouth though your brain only contains a small amount of taste buds but your brain does play a much larger role in taste in fact your brain controls every single thing you taste, this discovery was published in 2015 in the journal Nature researchers found that your taste buds can sense different kinds of tastes but they can't interpret what those tastes mean it's your brains job to figure out if something is actually sweet or sour in other words you sense flavor with your mouth but your brain makes food meaningful and memorable.

Number 5: this solution of time

Can you remember what happened yesterday of course you can you can remember the past just like you can imagine the future but your subconscious can't do either one your deep mind can't perceive time the way your conscious one does for your subconscious the only time that matters is right now right this very second to your deep mind anything before or after doesn't make a lick of sense.

Number 6: a metaphorical mystery 

Your subconscious also doesn't understand metaphors or abstract concepts, in your deep mind everything is physical in concrete if for example if you told your subconscious your shining as bright as the Sun, your subconscious wouldn't know that's a compliment because it takes everything literally, so your deep mind would wonder why it's burning at 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit obviously that's not what you meant but your subconscious it doesn't know the difference.

Number 7: the fear experience

Where do your fears live okay let's say you're afraid of ghosts does that mean that there's one section of your brain filled with haunting spirits and demons for years this is how people understood fear they imagined all their scary thoughts packed into one nightmarish fear center of the brain it seemed like 95 percent of your brain was full of positive thoughts while all your fears were crammed into that last five percent but where exactly is this terrifying fear center, most neurologists looked to an almond-shaped cluster of neurons called the amygdala now normally the amygdala plays a huge role in your emotions it makes sense your amygdala would Harbor your deepest darkest fears as well but neurologists weren't just guessing, this idea was based on a study from 2001 in this study which was published in the Journal of Neuroscience it looked at fear responses in monkeys but these weren't any ordinary monkeys ooh each one of them had noticeable damage to their amygdala that means their brain couldn't process emotions like they normally do, so when these brain-damaged monkeys didn't respond to threatening stimuli researchers assumed the amygdala was to blame but the truth is fear is a lot more complicated than that in fact little bits of fears and have it almost every single part of your brain, this was best explained by dr. Joseph LeDoux director of the emotional brain Institute at New York University in his essay in psychology today he argues against using the amygdala as our fear center he says that the amygdala plays a small role in fear but so does the rest of your brain while your fears may only occupy 5% of your conscious mind that 5% is spread out across your entire brain they're connected to your senses your emotions and of course your memories in other words you'll never really know how deep your fears live inside your head.

Number 8: the brain can't feel pain

Unlike the rest of your body your brain can't feel pain, according to a 2010 essay from the Journal of Clinical Investigation your body is filled with sensors called nociceptors these sensors serve one important purpose and that is when they perceive something painful they send a signal straight to the brain as soon as your brain receives that signal it realizes something on your body hurts but what happens if your brain itself is feeling pain the simple answer is nothing your brain never develops any nociceptors, so we can't recognize when it's hurting there are some exceptions like headaches and brain freeze but for the most part your brain doesn't feel pain.

Number 9: fragmented memory 

How our memories stored in your deep mind most people imagine little bubbles holding perfect memorable moments but that's not how your brain works, after encoding a memory your brain splits that memory into little bitty pieces and then it stores those pieces in different parts of your long-term memory, so what happens when you want to remember a birthday party or a family barbecue your brain has to track down all those little pieces and it has to reconstruct your memory from the ground up if you've ever wondered why so many little details get lost, well this is why.

Number 10: late bloomers

Your brain finishes developing around the time year 24 but that doesn't mean it's done performing at its best your mind can do so many different things that each cognitive skill peaks at a different time, according to a 2015 study from the Association for psychological science some skills peak when you're in your 20s but others are late bloomers vocabulary skills, for example, don't perform at their best until decades later when you're in your early 70s.

Number 11: hundreds of biases

You're thinking clearly most of the time right most people believe that but psychology tells us something a little bit different there are over 200 kinds of psychological biases and distortions each one of those is changing the way you think, some biases are pretty rare but others like our positivity bias affect our minds on a daily basis, it's a little creepy to think about but your mind is manipulating your thoughts more than you think .

Number 12: six minutes

How long can your brain survive without your heart with all that power stacked inside your head you'd think that your brain could last on its own right but the truth is your brain can only survive for six minutes without a constant supply of blood if someone can't start your heart in six minutes there's a good chance that you're never going to wake up but even if you beat that six minute time limit your brain might be damaged forever, according to the University of Michigan transplant center permanent brain damage can start as soon as three minutes after you stop breathing what's even worse your neurons start dropping like flies after a measly 60 seconds, your brain might be one of the most complicated and powerful things in the universe but it can all fall apart in the blink of an eye.

Number 13: subconscious control

Your conscious mind does a lot of things it uses logic and reason to solve problems it deciphers abstract ideas and pays attention to social cues but is your conscious mind really in control your brain the answer is a resounding no, the vast majority of your brain is part of your deep mind, in other words, you don't know most of what's happening in your brain on a regular basis.