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David R. Hamilton, Ph.D.
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Entries by David R. Hamilton, Ph.D.

Can You Resist a Smile?

(0) Comments | Posted November 7, 2012 | 5:43 AM

"A smile is a curve that sets everything straight." -- Phyllis Dyer

Have you noticed that when you smile at someone, especially if you catch them off-guard, that they smile back?

OK, not everyone smiles back! Or do they?

I was telling a few friends about the exciting

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Why Friends May Be Your Ticket to Living to 100

(112) Comments | Posted October 20, 2012 | 12:30 AM

Most of us accept that the secret to living to a very old age is either down to genetics or lifestyle. In reality, it's a bit of both, with genetics actually only contributing 20-30 percent of the likelihood of living to 100.

Ultimately, lifestyle is the bit that...

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5 Tips to Help You Forgive -- And Become Healthier

(9) Comments | Posted November 6, 2011 | 9:44 AM

"My heart eased immediately and I could see the tension released in his shoulders." -- Immaculee Illabagiza, from the book, "Left To Tell."

"Forgiveness is the moment-to-moment experience of peace and understanding that occurs when an injured party's suffering is reduced as they transform their grievance against an offending party."...

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10 Things I Have Learned in My Life

(11) Comments | Posted June 21, 2011 | 6:35 PM

Life presents us with many different experiences. Sometimes they are wholly positive experiences and sometimes they really challenge us to dig inside ourselves and find something we never knew existed. What we learn from these experiences shapes our character.

Here is a list of some of the things I've...

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5 Beneficial Side Effects of Kindness

(33) Comments | Posted June 2, 2011 | 8:26 AM

"If you haven't any charity in your heart, you have the worst kind of heart trouble."
--Bob Hope

When we think of side effects, the first thing that springs to mind are the side effects of drugs. But who'd have thought that kindness could have side effects, too?


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Are Healthy (And Unhealthy) Habits Contagious?

(22) Comments | Posted May 29, 2011 | 10:16 AM

Have you ever caught a healthy habit from a friend? Ever been inspired to go to the gym or to eat healthy because one of your friends is doing it? Friends can really make a difference in our lives.

It turns out that we can catch unhealthy habits from our...

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Emotional Contagion: Are Your Feelings 'Infecting' Others?

(2) Comments | Posted May 19, 2011 | 5:46 AM

Ever noticed that you feel happy around happy people and sad around sad or depressed people, or even agitated around anxious people?

Research shows that if you spend enough time with people, their emotions will actually rub off on you.

This is known as "emotional contagion" and...

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The Placebo Effect: How The Mind Makes Drugs Work Better

(12) Comments | Posted April 28, 2011 | 8:26 AM

I developed an acute interest in the placebo effect -- where a person improves on a fake drug because they believe they are taking an actual drug -- while working in drug development for a multinational pharmaceutical company.

We all experience placebo effects from time to time. Believing in a...

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Compassion: The Elixir of Life?

(39) Comments | Posted March 9, 2011 | 8:16 AM

New research suggests that compassion might be able to slow the aging process.

Gerontologists (scientists who research aging) probing into why we age have found that a major part of the effects of aging may actually be collateral damage in the body due to inflammation.

On the...

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Can We Think Ourselves Slim?

(2) Comments | Posted February 22, 2011 | 10:03 AM

There is no doubt that the mind can affect the body.

You only need to think of something that you're afraid of and you release stress hormones from the pituitary gland in your brain that target the adrenal glands, resulting in adrenalin pumping through your body, and this increases blood...

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Can Kindness Cut the Risk of Heart Disease?

(60) Comments | Posted December 23, 2010 | 8:32 AM

If someone were to suggest that helping an elderly person to carry their shopping could cut the risk of heart disease, I think most people's minds would jump to the thought of the exercise they'd be getting.

That's a fair enough thought, especially if the bags are heavy and you...

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Do Positive People Live Longer?

(251) Comments | Posted November 2, 2010 | 8:41 AM

Most people assume that positive thinking is just something that we do to help achieve our goals, or even to get through difficult times. But a host of exciting research has shown that attitude affects our health -- so much so, in fact, that a positive attitude can add years...

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How Meditation Affects the Gray Matter of the Brain

(25) Comments | Posted October 7, 2010 | 8:00 AM

I like to meditate. It makes me feel at ease and I am convinced that the sense of calm it produces helps me to handle the daily challenges of my life. There are, of course, times when I don't keep up my daily practice of sitting quietly for 10 or...

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