March 07, 2008

A Cranky Fitness Quiz

[By Merry and Crabby]

Could We Get Any More Imaginative with the Visual Aids?

Here at Cranky Fitness, we have a love/hate relationship with scientific and medical research. Sometimes we learn really useful information (dark chocolate and avocados are good for you!), but often these studies just mess with our heads.

Plus, they bring up so many questions. Questions like:

Is the source reliable? Are the findings replicated anywhere else? Do the results confuse causation and correlation? Why do the researchers have such weird names? And finally: how on earth do some of these people get funding for such idiotic ideas?

But, well, this is a health blog. So in order to fill up space without having to think of anything original bring you the latest health research findings, we do at times have rely on research even if we don't entirely trust it. And now we'd like to share this very same discomfort with you folks!

So here's the deal, if you're feeling up for a challenge.

For each group of four research findings, try to pick out the real one from the alternatives we've made up.

Answers will be provided... over the weekend! But feel free to speculate in the comments section, unless you've actually seen the real study in question in which case please keep your smarty-pants answers to yourself.

No prizes, alas, but do check back in over the weekend to see how well you did (or not).

And note: some of our fake answers may accidentally be true. We weren't willing to stay up all night googling in order to find out. So bonus bragging rights are available to anyone who can demonstrate more than one answer has research to back it up.

Ready? Sharpen your pencils--and then put them back down again, for heaven's sake, unless you want to poke holes in your computer monitor. This is just the internet, remember?

1. Music and Health:

In comparison to the general population:

a. People who prefer classical music are more likely to suffer from ulcers.

b. Country music fans are more likely to be suicidal.

c. Heavy metal music fans are more likely to get divorced.

d. Those who listen to jazz are more likely to have substance abuse problems.


2. Creative surgery:

If you need an unusual surgical solution, and Dr. House is not available, you might be desperate enough to undergo one of these surgical techniques (one of which is genuine):

a. Transplant a tooth to restore a patient's eyesight.

b. Use leeches to transfer blood, having them suck the blood from the donor and then bite the recipient and allow the blood to drain into the veins.

c. Transplant totipotent adult stem cells into a patient’s eye to regrow the connective tissue between the retinal epithelium and a detached retina.

d. Graft tissue from a patient’s spleen onto their thyroid gland to help protect the thyroid from the effects of chronic autoimmune hypothyroiditis.

3. Does sex count as exercise?

Whether it does or not probably won't have any effect on its popularity. However, one of these studies about sex and exercise is true. Researchers found that:

a. It turns out that athletes who abstain from sex prior to a competition really do have improved times on the track.

b. Cyclists who ride more than 100 miles a week actually had less difficulty conceiving children that cyclists who rode fewer miles a week.

c. Baseball players who used a nicotine patch instead of chewing tobacco were found to possess sperm with increased motility.

d. Runners who increased their stamina on a treadmill found their sexual stamina had increased as well.

4. Emergency Medicine:

If you suffer one of these unfortunate accidents and can't get proper medical treatment, which of these is a reasonably effective alternative?

a. If you accidentally swallow a black-widow spider, to neutralize the venom you should drink chocolate syrup--at least 3 cans would be optimal (if you happen to live in a grocery store).

b. If you are stricken with a sudden episode of vertigo, try hitting your head sharply several times with a heavy but not sharp object (using less force than would likely cause concussion). The spot to aim for is in the back of the head, at approximately eye level.

c. If you should overdose on antifreeze, you should try to get totally, spectacularly, shit-faced drunk on the most potent alcohol you can find.

d. If you suffer a terrifying panic attack in an airplane, try standing on your head. (But only if you can do so without being arrested and water-boarded as a suspected terrorist, otherwise this remedy will not be particularly helpful in warding off future panic attacks.)

5. Department of the Obvious:

All of these findings are probably true, but which one was actually funded and published?

a. If you consume approximately eight times the recommended dosage of an over-the-counter laxative, you will likely suffer from gastrointestinal distress.

b. Downhill skiers who have a blood alcohol level of over .10 are more likely to injure themselves and require hospitalization.

c. If you sit around in really cold temperatures for an hour, you will be more uncomfortable if your underwear is wet.

d. Children who have bitten two or more of their classmates tend to be less popular than average.

6. Eyesight and the future:

If you find that you've started having trouble with your eyes, which of these scenarios should you most worry about?

a. Difficulty seeing will lead to difficulty peeing, since when you're out in public you won't be able to see where to go and will feel constrained to hold it in, ultimately leading to nephritis.

b. People who have trouble with their eyesight are more likely to suffer a stroke or heart attack

c. Problems with eyesight will lead to a greater likelihood of developing diabetes.

d. Losing your eyesight is linked to difficulties with hearing: people who can't see often turn to playing their music too loud as a way to deal with the frustrations caused by the impairment.

So, think you did really well? Here's another challenge. This one is particularly for the readers/writers in the crowd, who know something about "voice" and whatnot. Can you guess which 3 questions were written by Crabby and which 3 were by Merry? And yes, we are aware that some of you think we are the same person. You can still guess anyway.

Have a great Friday everyone!

18 comments:

  1. Ha Ha!! Great read! Thanks!

    Dr. J

    PS You will need a second mortgage on the new house to afford that car, my hero :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Blogger keeps eating my comments! And gosh, they didn't contain have strong language.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, good, it's letting me comment again.

    Whaddya mean we're the same person?
    Does that mean I have to go move boxes :(

    On the plus side, it could also mean that you have to document that incredibly convoluted shared access network system. Yeah, sure we're the same person! No problem. Here's a pencil and some writing paper. :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. SCIENCE! *ahem*
    Cool...I say 1d,2a,3d,4c,5d,6c.

    I'm not surprised at some of the things you can get funding for...I often wonder "OK I can't get funding for my work but you got $$ for *that?" Often the rush to publish to maintain status in academia ends up with some odd papers publishing obvious (and often not very true or proven) work, making crazy ass solutions and conclusions from data. And you should hunt up old papers from the early 1900s and have a read...the original ones on the use/function of morphine are particularly good for a laugh with things aalong the line of injecting patient with morphine and then hit repeatedly in legs with baseball bat, and the patient felt nothing!
    Personally I think scientists have it way tougher today...but there's so much to learn. If only research got the same funding as organised sports...we'd have solved more interesting things I bet!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks Dr. J! And I'll have that car delivered just as soon as a certain dramatic weather event happens WAY down south. But if I had billions, I'd buy one for each of us. (For those who haven't read Dr. J's latest column, he's angling for a very sweet ride).

    Merry--so blogger is in Comment Eating mode again? I don't know why that happens sometimes but it's infuriating. (And you already had to do your time doing boxes, so good thing we're not the same person or you'd have to do it again. But I'd rather sort through decades of accumulated crap in the basement than try to document shared access network systems!)

    And geosomin, omg! I'm glad I wasn't a research subject in the morphine experiment after the drug wore off. Yikes! (Will not comment yet on the accuracy of your guesses, but tomorrow all will be revealed).

    ReplyDelete
  6. Because I believe everything I read, and twice as much as I hear, I say it's all true.

    It amuses me to think classical music leads to ulcers and teeth restore eyesight. I especially believe those. Now, if I can just find me a black widow spider I'll be all set.
    Seriously, great quiz and well executed.

    ReplyDelete
  7. What, you don't keep at least 3 cans of Hershey's syrup in the pantry? I'm confused.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ooh, a quiz!

    I think...

    *Those who listen to jazz are more likely to have substance abuse problems.

    *Transplanting totipotent adult stem cells into a patient’s eye to regrow the connective tissue between the retinal epithelium and a detached retina is a real surgery.

    *Runners who increased their stamina on a treadmill found their sexual stamina had increased as well. (Definitely not the cyclists! Bicycle seats are bad for the dangly bits!)

    *If you should overdose on antifreeze, you should try to get totally, spectacularly, shit-faced drunk on the most potent alcohol you can find. (Something similar to this was on House once!)

    *Someone actually funded and published a study saying that if you consume approximately eight times the recommended dosage of an over-the-counter laxative, you will likely suffer from gastrointestinal distress.

    *Losing your eyesight is linked to difficulties with hearing: people who can't see often turn to playing their music too loud as a way to deal with the frustrations caused by the impairment.

    *eagerly awaits the correct answers* XD

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hey! Where did the Bag Lady's carefully crafted comment go?
    **sigh**
    Now you'll just have to be content with E. All of the above....

    ReplyDelete
  10. Okay, I'm guessing: 1-B, 2-B, 3-D, 4-C, 5-D, 6-B.

    I really wanted to choose the chocolate syrup one but I finally went with the acohol. Don't we usually?

    And I'm also gonna guess that the authors of the questions alternate. 1 Merry, 2 Crabby, 3 Merry and so on. But it's hard to tell!!!!

    And you both made me snort in public. (At work.)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Okay, my vast knowledge leads me to answer thusly: 1d, 2a, 3a, 4c, 5a, 6c

    Well, alright, I know one answer is correct, the rest are just guesses. Speaking of which, I am guessing that 1,3,5 are written by Merry & 2,4,6 by Crabby.

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  12. You ladies are so creative! Your my sheroes. Looking at the quiz, I'd like to pick e. all of the above.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Happiness is a healthy happy fluffy dog.

    Plus, a plane that doesn't fall down.

    What more could anyone ask for?

    ReplyDelete
  14. Ooh, some great guesses! I'm glad some of our smartiest smarty pants commenters showed up today. And thanks everyone, for even thinking about taking a science quiz on a Friday!

    (And Therapy doc--good point. But I only have 1 can on hand of Hershey's syrup. I have other more potent forms of chocolate available.)

    Merry, hooray for safe arrivals and beloved dogs! Glad all went well on the first leg of your journey.

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  15. I've been thinking of starting a research project on Music and Weight Loss. It does intrigue me as a music therapist. I have done one on how music affects one's food consumption and should really try another one.

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  16. Fun quiz! And as a reader of many health studies, some of these made me giggle out loud.

    Can't wait for the reveal of the answers...

    ReplyDelete
  17. Great post. It has interesting points regarding
    panic attacks. I've finally learnt how to control it from www.whatcausespanicattacks.com.Pretty useful. Any opinions?

    ReplyDelete

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