6 Things You Need To Know Today (January 18)

1. Want to be smarter and more innovative? Diversify your social group.

While it seems obvious that diversity of expertise would benefit a group's innovation abilities, less obvious is that social diversity has the same result. Numerous studies confirm that groups containing mixed genders, races, political affiliations, and more benefit from encouraging better consideration, preparation, and explanation of perspectives. Sounds like a win to us. (Scientific American)

2. Doctors are now prescribing food as medicine.

Looking to prevent a disease, both for yourself and your children? Look no further than your local grocery store. Doctors in California are now making a concerted effort to give their patients the information they need about how certain foods can help prevent and cure their medical ailments. (NPR)

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3. Social media is wrecking teenagers' sleep.

One in five young people (between ages 12 and 15) reported that they regularly checked their social media accounts at least once during the night. Not only does this cause reduced energy during the day, but it can also negatively affect mood and well-being. (Science Daily)

4. When it comes to chronic pain, are cannabinoids the answer?

While the research in general is conflicting, a new study is hopeful that cannabinoids can do a better job of treating chronic pain than opioids, due to their effectiveness and minimized chance of addiction. Since chronic pain affects about 30 percent of the U.S. population, this could transform the way we think about treating pain. (Science Daily)

5. Women's representative Mishi Mboko is urging women in the city of Mombasa to withhold sex until their husbands register to vote.

In an effort to increase the chances that current Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta is not re-elected for a second term, Mboko has suggested women withhold sex until their husbands have shown them their voter registration cards. It's not the first time this has happened in Kenya, either. And these women are intent on wielding what power they have as effectively as possible. (BBC)

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6. Swedish midwives launch course on giving birth...in cars

Expectant parents in a town in Sweden are being offered training on how to deliver a baby in a car after the local maternity ward was earmarked for closure. Two midwives at the hospital came up with the idea in order to help mothers and fathers to feel safer during the long journey (62 miles away) to the nearest maternity unit. (BBC)

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