The Surprising Ways Stress Affects Your Body

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The Surprising Ways Stress Affects Your Body

Everyone deals with stress some of the time. One of the most popular times? The holidays. Gifts to buy, meals to cook, family drama to dredge up again. It can be a lot to handle. Most of us probably know the telltale symptoms of stress: muscle tension, headaches, sleeplessness, irritability. But it has some more surprising and insidious effects, too.For example, did you know that there's a scientific link between stress and acne? Stress creates an inflammatory response, which can cause otherwise harmlessly clogged pores to turn red and trigger the production of pus, creating unsightly zits. This inflammatory response can also make you more susceptible to colds and other illnesses, according to a 2012 study in PNAS.

The Hedgehog Dilemma Describes The Challenges Of Human Intimacy

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The Hedgehog Dilemma Describes The Challenges Of Human Intimacy

Do you ever feel like a hedgehog? Yep. We know the feeling. If you're not following, we'll back up. There's a philosophical concept called the hedgehog dilemma (or sometimes the porcupine dilemma) that is a metaphor for human intimacy. It describes a situation where a group of hedgehogs need to cuddle together closely for warmth in the winter, but when they do, their spikes prick and hurt one another. There's something to be learned here.

Ashrita Furman Has The World Record For Most World Records

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Ashrita Furman Has The World Record For Most World Records

Ashrita Furman is the guy you want to sit and have a beer with. If there's any person on Earth who deserves the title of Mr. Versatility, it's Furman. Though he has conquered a number of impressive (if bizarre) feats, he is truly the best at one thing: breaking world records. Since 1979, the Brooklyn native has set more than 500 Guinness World Records, more than any other individual. And if anyone wants to overtake his title, they better get started: Furman was still actively smashing titles in 2016.

Ötzi Is The World's Oldest Wet Mummy

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Ötzi Is The World's Oldest Wet Mummy

Trekking the Ötztal Alps in September of 1991, two hikers stumbled upon a gruesome discovery: the head and bare shoulders of a dead man sticking out of the ice. When rescue crews arrived, however, they began to realize that this was no ordinary corpse. Scientists soon discovered that this was a 5,300-year-old human. His body had been mummified in glacier ice—making him what's known as a "wet" mummy—which preserved important details about his life and death for modern humans to find.

Earth May Have Entered A New Epoch

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Earth May Have Entered A New Epoch

We may be in a new epoch. Like the humans that survived the last glacial period to move from the Pleistocene to the Holocene, modern humans may have left the Holocene to enter the brand-new Anthropocene—the "age of humans." To delineate these stretches of time, geologists must identify individual boundaries in layers of rock known as strata. If a boundary is found in rock all over the world, the International Commission on Stratigraphy (ICS) appraises it for entry in the International Chronostratigraphic Chart, which defines geologic time in terms of eons, eras, periods, epochs, and ages. Often, these rock boundaries are caused by natural events such as ice ages and volcanic activity. The Anthropocene is not yet an official epoch, but if it becomes one, it will be defined by human activity—specifically, the significant changes we've made to the land, air, and water. The date of the epoch's start is up in the air, but it will most likely be 1945, the date of the first nuclear bomb detonation. There's another thing that's unusual about the Anthropocene beyond its human influence: geologic time is usually captured in rock, and it's too early to see human influence in the geologic record. If the ICS adds this epoch, it will be the first of its kind. Explore the science of strata with the videos below.