Buckeye Researchers Found Out How to Make Old Favorites Novel Again

If you’ve become bored of one of your favorite things, researchers at the Ohio State University might have some suggestions on how to introduce some novelty back into your favorite things. What they found was that whatever the activity or object was—popcorn, videos, even water—when consumed in an unconventional way, the consumer enjoyed them more.

The study suggested that when a subject consumed something via an unconventional method they were more easily able to focus on what it was that they loved about it in the first place. This phenomenon has already been employed in “pitch black” restaurants. These popular eateries serve dinner in the dark.

The researchers conducted multiple experiments. In a study of 68 participants, subjects came to a lab thinking they were there for a study on how to help people eat more slowly. Some of the subjects ate 10 pieces of popcorn using just hands; the others ate the pieces with chopsticks. Subjects then rated their experience in a variety of ways. Some of the measures were overall enjoyment, how much flavor the popcorn had and how much fun they had eating it. Participants using the chopsticks later said they enjoyed eating the popcorn more than the subjects who used their hands.

The research was published online at the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

Buckeye Creates Mobile Invention Studio to Support Would-Be Inventors

On the campus of OSU, in the main lobby of the James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, there is a workspace intended to help bring innovative ideas to life. In fact, it is called the Innovation Studio. It’s mission—to use collaboration to solve health care issues. Chief innovation officer, Tim Raderstorf, conceived the idea for the studio.

The portable setup includes 3D printers, laser cutters and a multitude of hand tools. There is also assistance available in product design and pitch development. The studio will remain in the James until the end of July, but will also visit the College of Nursing and Thompson Library.

Innovation Studio also provides two more critical elements—funding and validation. Teams working in the studio can enter competitions in which top collaborations get funding to continue to develop their ideas.

Buckeye Researchers Find Trend in Obits of People Who Live Longer Lives

Researchers at the Ohio State University conducted a multi-part nationwide study on obituaries and found that people with religious affiliations live almost four years longer on average than people with no religious ties. The study looked at over 1,000 obituaries from all over the country. The study accounted for material status and sex, two factors already known to heavily affect lifespan.

Researchers found that one cause behind the longevity boost of religious affiliation is that many religious persons are also a part of other social and volunteer organizations. Previous studies had already linked these social affiliations to longer lifespans, so making the connection was not difficult. Additionally, the study found that the effects of religion on lifespan could also be linked to the “average religiosity” of where people live and the “personality” of that place.

As previously stated, there have been many studies that have shown that people who are a part of social or volunteer groups live longer than their peers who don’t—when combined with the other data about religious affiliations researchers found there was still something missing from the equation.

Researchers determined that one factor might be morality rules about sex and substance use in religions. These probably have a similar positive effect on longevity. In addition, stress relieving practices such as meditation, prayer, or gratitude are probably a factor.

The study is available online in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.

How New Mothers Affect the Quality of New Father’s Parenting

The reactions of new mothers to the father’s interactions with their baby in the early stages of the relationship could have an effect on that father’s parenting quality, according to a new study by OSU researchers. They found that fathers didn’t do as well in their parenting to 9-month-old kids if dads felt mom has been critical of their parenting abilities earlier on.

The study looked at higher income, educated couples who both had careers. Researchers are referring to this affect as maternal gatekeeping. This is due to the fact that in our society moms still have the most respect and control in the sphere of child rearing, according to researchers.

One way researchers measured maternal gatekeeping’s affect was by having dads report how often mom took control of a child rearing task because mom thought the job wasn’t being done well or correctly. Researchers suggested that mom needs to encourage dad by inviting him to do tasks like bathing and letting him know he has done a good job.

The study appears online in the Journal of Child and Family Studies.