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8 Advantages Only Left-Handed People Have

8 Advantages Only Left-Handed People Have

If you’re left-handed (or “sinistral”), you might wonder why the world is so oriented towards being right-handed (or “dextral”). Partly it’s because of tradition and superstition, but mostly its due 87%-90% of the world being right-handed. Nevertheless, when you start trying to adjust to all of the phones, golf clubs, can openers, stringed instruments, scissors, cooking utensils, and desks designed for right-handed people, you might just go mad and start thinking you’re most forgotten minority in the world.

The good news is that left-handed people have many advantages. Here are 8 that you may not have known about.

1. They are more likely to pass a driving test

Did you know that left-handers have higher success rates on driving tests than their right-handed brothers and sisters? Statistics show that 57% of left-handers pass their driving test first time round, while the right-handers only come in at 47%! Some of the best drivers in the world are left-handed such as Ayrton Senna and Valentino Rossi. If someone ever comments on your driving, there’s no harm in pointing this out!

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driving test

    2. They can make more money

    Statistics from the US National Bureau of Economic Research show that left-handed men with a college education earn 15% more money than their dextral colleagues. This is a significant difference, but nobody can explain why. Sadly, the opposite is true for women as left-handed females earn about 5% less than their right-handed coworkers. Depending on your sex, keep these points in mind when you are asking for your next pay raise.

    payrise

      3. They are faster typists

      Who says left-handers are slow typists? Most of us are one-finger typists because we have never learned touch-typing. However, left-handed typists can type up to 3,400 words on the standard QWERTY keyboard, which compares very poorly with 450 words for those using only their right hand. Just remind your colleagues that your typing is probably better than theirs because of this innate gift you possess. It makes you wonder: Was Christopher Latham Sholes, the inventor of the QWERTY keyboard, also left-handed?

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      qwerty

        4. They have better problem-solving skills

        It must be a coincidence (or is it?) that the last five US Presidents (except George W.Bush) have all been left-handed. From Nobel Prize winners to Mensa members, lefties certainly dominate the world much more than their 10% share of the population would suggest. Looking at Mensa stats, the figure of 20% of its members being lefties certainly suggests that they are more intelligent.

        Nobody is sure why this is the case. One plausible reason is that we are challenged from the very beginning to come up with solutions to our problems in a right-handed world. The next time you are praised for your problem solving abilities, just say you were born with it.

        lefthandedpresident

          5. They are better at some sports

          Take tennis. If you are a leftie, you can gain an advantage by using the leftie serve, which will create problems for right-handed players. There are similar advantages in boxing. Boxers are not used to dealing with opponents who lead from the left. Left-handed cricket batsmen also seem to do better. Leftie swimmers such as Mark Spitz were said to have a distinct advantage in that they were more easily able to adjust to underwater vision. If you play these sports, no harm in highlighting these advantages.

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          lefthandedserve

            6. They spend less time standing in lines

            Faced with the challenge of choosing which line to follow at the supermarket? No prizes for guessing that right-handed people tend to go for the right-hand side queues, while the lefties tend to go left. Because they’re in a minority, lefties can find shorter lines and get out faster. Try going left next time at the checkout and let your partner know why!

            7. They are more likely to excel in creative and visual arts

            Sinistrals are more likely to be successful than the dextrals in music, architecture, and art. They have some pretty solid proof, too: Picasso, Leonardo da Vinci, and Micehlangelo were all lefties. Add in Albert Einstein and Beethoven, and you have a great pedigree. Make sure your friends know this when you have your next burst of creativity.

            Is there any evidence why this is the case? Daniel Geschwind is a specialist in neurobehavioral genetics at UCLA and has been investigating this. He knows that lefties are using both sides of the brain when they are dealing with language. The fact that they are also using the right side of the brain creates more opportunities for creativity. Otherwise, there is still no convincing scientific evidence as to why this is.

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            8. They are better at multitasking

            Lefties have always had to think more quickly, as they have always faced right-handed challenges. This pays off later in life, because the communication between both of their brain hemispheres is that much faster and more efficient. This is what makes multi-tasking so much easier for lefties. They have a definite advantage in being able to process multiple streams of information coming at them. If someone frowns when you are multitasking, just smile and say it’s all under control.

            multitasking

              The stigma and shame of being left-handed has long disappeared, but the mystery and fascination remain. Maybe we will never know what really causes left-handedness, and how it makes such a difference in people’s lives.

              Featured photo credit: Left handed reggae legend Jimmy Cliff/ Michael Coghlan via flickr.com

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              Robert Locke

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              8 Things to Watch for If You’re Considering Being Vegetarian

              8 Things to Watch for If You’re Considering Being Vegetarian

              Vegetarianism has been around for a long time, finding favor with many people, including Pythagoras clear back around 580 B.C. It’s been presented as one of the most healthy diets around, including being touted by the Egyptians to the point of abstaining from meat and animal clothing due to karmic beliefs. The vegetarian society (vegsoc.org) defines vegetarianism as:

              “Someone who lives on a diet of grains, pulses, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruits with, or without, the use of dairy products and eggs. A vegetarian does not eat any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish* or by-products of slaughter.”

              While it’s pretty obvious that there are multiple benefits to following a vegetarian diet, it’s always good to be informed about the cons of this dietary choice as well.

              Outlined below are several things you might want to be aware of before you say good-bye to meat forever. Whether you are a current vegetarian, or contemplating making a shift, keep in mind these 8 things to keep yourself healthy.

              1. You could suffer from B12 vitamin deficiency

              The B vitamins are especially important for stress management, adrenal health, and brain function. Vegetarians in particularly are at risk for B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 is attached to the protein in animal products and without enough B12 you can suffer from depression, fatigue, and an inability to concentrate.

              Due to its attachment to animal proteins, B12 is the hardest for vegetarians to obtain when they don’t eat dairy or eggs in their diet. This essential little vitamin can be found in some algae and has been added to some yeast, but research doesn’t currently provide enough information to say whether or not these forms of B12 are of good quality and can provide adequate supplementation.

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              The body is unable to make this vitamin, meaning it has to be taken in through food or supplementation. Essential for making red blood cells, DNA, nerves and various other function in the body, a Harvard Health Medical report in January of 2013 found symptoms of a B12 deficiency can present in sneaky ways including depression, paranoia, delusion, and loss of taste and smell.

              2.  You could suffer from higher states of anxiety/depression, lower sense of well-being

              According to a CBS Atlanta report, vegetarians suffered from a higher rate of anxiety and depression than their counterparts. Read the full report here. Depression and/or anxiety can be a result of many possible deficiencies including essential vitamins and amino acids you can find only in meat products, including Omega-3s from wild caught salmon.

              Without the correct supplementation and proper understanding of diet, including the importance of micro and macro nutrients, depression and anxiety can become a serious problem, bringing down the overall health and well-being of vegetarians.

              Even though reports on health and lifestyle show vegetarians have a lower BMI and lower consumption of alcohol and drugs, it also shows they suffer from more chronic illnesses and more visits to the doctor than their meat eating counterparts.

              3. You could suffer from excess weight

              When you go vegetarian it opens up a lot of food, but just because there isn’t any meat in front of you, it doesn’t mean it’s necessary healthy. Though pizza and beer technically fall under the vegetarian diet, it’s not a healthy choice for your waist line.

              Just because being a vegetarian is associated with a healthier lifestyle in many cases, doesn’t mean it’s always true. Making bread and pasta your staples and not understanding where your protein sources should be coming from, can pack on body fat, which increases your chances of health issues such as diabetes and chronic inflammation.

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              If the choice to go vegetarian happens on a whim without the proper understanding of food control, portion, and nutritionally dense alternatives you can find yourself reaching for vegetarian foods, which could cause serious problems down the road. Nuts are a good example, but just because something is touted as healthy, it doesn’t mean, your should eat it in excess.

              Eating too many calories in fat will still cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories in carbs will cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories in protein will cause you to gain weight. See a pattern here? Not to mention you’ll miss out on important nutrients the body needs by over-eating in one area and under-eating in another. Re-read number 2.

              4. You could have a higher risk of heart disease

              Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables should be a goal we all strive for, but when you cut out meat, you also cut out what is known as complete protein, which you find in animal by-products. Complete means more than just the essential amino acids, it means those amino acids contain dietary sulfur. Without enough dietary sulfur, which is found almost exclusively in fish and pasture feed grass beef, the body will struggle with the biological activities of both protein and enzymes.

              The effects cascade downward, effecting bones, joints, tissues, and even metabolic issues. In short, a low intake of sulfur associated with a vegetarian diet can result in high blood levels of homocysteine, which may lead to blood clots in your arteries, blood clots raise your risk of stroke and heart attack. To read the full report click here.

              5. You could suffer from low cholesterol

              I know, at first you’re thinking, wait, low cholesterol is a good thing. Yes, it is, when it’s LDL cholesterol, which you get from eating an unhealthy diet, but low HDL (good cholesterol) can cause serious health issues. HDL, according to the mayo clinic, is in every cell in our body and can help fend off heart disease, not enough of it though, and too much LDL can go the other way, will be building up plaque in the arteries and leading to heart disease.

              Cholesterol, the good kind, is actually vitally important to the making of every steroid hormone in the body! There are six, and without cholesterol the body is unable to convert hormones, and it can cause damage in the endocrine system.

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              A vegetarian without a balanced diet, meaning enough protein, enough veggies, and enough good fats, could disrupt his or her adrenals, which are directly connected to the endocrine system and the body’s ability to make and synthesize the hormones your body needs. The six major hormones in the body help do everything from metabolizing carbohydrates, to the electrolyte balance, to making sure if you’re a woman you can carry a healthy baby through pregnancy.

              6. You could suffer from lower bone density and osteoporosis.

              Osteoporosis, the disease where the bones get thinner, weaker, and fractures become a high risk with day to day movements. It’s often associated with the older generation, but your risk for osteoporosis increases with a lower bone density. Bone density can be directly related to diet and lifestyle, along with many other factors.

              When it comes to eating a vegetarian diet it’s possible to miss getting enough of the right nutrients, causing the bones to begin to break down. If your vegetarian diet isn’t balanced and providing you with the correct nutrients and the means to absorb the correct nutrients, your body could begin to break down.

              Recently, Professor Tuan Nguyen of Sydney’s Garvan Institute of Medical Research led a review of both Australian and Vietnamese research around the bone density of vegetarian versus their meat eating counterparts. Helping Professor Nguyen was Dr. Ho-Pham Thuc Lan from Pham Ngoc Thac University of Medicine in Vietnam. The review was designed to sort though years of research surrounded by discrepancies and inadequate clinical data.

              At the end of the review, with vegetarianism rising to around 5% of the populace in the western continents, and with wide spread osteoporosis reports – 2 million in Australia and closer to 54 million in America – the decrease in bone density of vegetarians is a serious issue which needs to be addressed, if you’ve cut meat and animal by-products out of your life.

              7. You could be at a higher risk for colorectal cancer

              Cancer seems to be running rampant through America, and it’s within everyone’s best interest to do all they can to keep their body healthy and happy to prevent cancer from finding a place to grow. In most studies it’s been found vegetarians are at lower risk for cancer, but a European Oxford study with over 63 thousand men and women in the United Kingdom found the risk for colorectal cancer higher in vegetarians than in meat-eaters.

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              Extra care needs to be taken when establishing a diet to ensure the body is receiving and able to up take all the important nutritional benefits and requirements from food.

              8. You could end up eating more processed food

              Depending on how deep you choose to go as a vegetarian, it could create the need to substitute a lot of food and recipe ingredients in your diet, but what happens when you cut out meat, eggs, and dairy and your recipe calls for meat, eggs, and/or dairy? You have to end up using a “healthy” vegetarian alternative which include stabilizers, thickeners, and various other ingredients you can’t pronounce.

              Lauren from Empowered Substance puts it into a great perspective with her comparison of Earth Balance, a vegetarian approved butter replacement compared to butter. She points out the ingredients in Earth Balance consist of: Palm fruit oil, canola oil, safflower oil, flax oil, olive oil, salt, natural flavor, pea protein, sunflower lecithin, lactic acid, annatto color. Meanwhile, the ingredient list in butter, is much shorter. It’s butter.

              That’s only one example. To appeal to the vegetarian lifestyle food manufacturers have found alternatives which fall under vegetarian, but aren’t necessarily healthy for you. Consider baked goods, which though vegetarian can be filled with more sugars and binders than regular baked goods with diary products. It’s the same with vegetarian items like mac and cheese, without using real cheese you may just be getting oil and thickeners, without even the smallest amount of nutritional value.

              The reality is, most vegetarian substitutes contain the same junky alternatives which even meat eaters should be avoiding to remain happy and healthy.

              On one final note, whichever lifestyle you choose to work with, remember anything in excess – including protein and animal by products – isn’t healthy for the body. It takes a wide spectrum of food and nutrients to keep the beautiful body you travel around in all day running in prime condition.

               

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