The Simple Treatment That Slows Brain Aging And Cognitive Decline

A common complaint that increases brain aging, unless treated.

High blood pressure, at any age or for any duration, accelerates brain aging, a study finds.

People with high blood pressure are at greater risk of memory problems and difficulties concentrating and talking fluently.

Around half of all Americans have high blood pressure, which is simply treated with a combination of lifestyle changes and medication.

The cut-off for high blood pressure is around 120 to 130 mmHg (this is the top number on the reading).

Sometimes this range is known as ‘prehypertension’, but the study still found this level damaging to cognitive skills over time.

High blood pressure is problematic for young and old, explained Professor Sandhi M. Barreto, study co-author:

“We initially anticipated that the negative effects of hypertension on cognitive function would be more critical when hypertension started at a younger age, however, our results show similar accelerated cognitive performance decline whether hypertension started in middle age or at older ages.

We also found that effectively treating high blood pressure at any age in adulthood could reduce or prevent this acceleration.

Collectively, the findings suggest hypertension needs to be prevented, diagnosed and effectively treated in adults of any age to preserve cognitive function.”

The conclusions come from an analyses of over 7,000 people in Brazil who were tracked for almost four years.

The results showed that people’s cognitive skills declined if their blood pressure was over 121 mmHg and they did not take medication.

People with uncontrolled hypertension showed the worst declines in thinking skills.

Professor Barreto said:

“In addition to other proven benefits of blood pressure control, our results highlight the importance of diagnosing and controlling hypertension in patients of any age to prevent or slow down cognitive decline.

Our results also reinforce the need to maintain lower blood pressure levels throughout life, since even prehypertension levels were associated with cognitive decline.”

The study was published in the journal Hypertension (Teles De Menezes et al., 2020).

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What Is PHP and Why Website Owners Should Care?

PHP refers to Hypertext Preprocessor, but don’t let the highfalutin terminology (or the word “highfalutin”) intimidate you. It’s just a general-purpose computer language used for developing web-based applications. With it, you can create dynamic, interactive web pages that boost user experience and engagement.

PHP is open-source and ubiquitous, running on nearly 80% of websites globally in one way or another. Moreover, nearly every reputable web-hosting platform supports PHP. As a result, PHP’s impressive reach has solidified it as one of the world’s most commonly used programming languages today.

What Is PHP?

PHP is a high-level programming language created by Rasmus Lerdorf in 1994. It was written in the C programming language and was initially conceived as a set of Common Gateway Interface (CGI) binary tools. Lerdorf originally named it “Personal Home Page Tools” because he used it to track visits to his online resume.

Today, PHP is used as a server-side programming language for dynamic content websites and web applications that interact with databases. It can be used to serve many purposes, such as creating forms to receive data, creating sessions, or sending and receiving emails and cookies.

However, PHP is also a scripting language that’s interpreted at runtime and embedded in HTML. So, although PHP is used primarily for backend scripting, it actually allows the server to interact with both frontend and backend frameworks.

In addition to interactive web components, PHP scripts are used to create utilities such as plugins, design themes, and other elements that power content management systems (CMS) like WordPress.

Furthermore, PHP’s scripting background makes it easy for developers to write code. It is a loosely typed language, meaning it imposes fewer restrictions on the specification of data types. It provides eight data types to construct variables, but it doesn’t…

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How To Encourage Your Partner To Change Themselves

Empathy for certain emotions helps couples have difficult discussions about change, research finds.

Direct communication is the best way to get your partner to change, research finds.

Whether it is getting them to lose weight, spend less money or change life goals, being more direct is the best approach.

Naturally, these sorts of discussions are fraught with difficulty.

The emotional tone of the communication is vital.

Be empathetic

One key to having difficult discussions is empathy.

Research shows that people with stronger relationships tend to be better at reading the emotions of embarrassment, shame and sadness in their partner.

Couples who perceived these softer negative emotions more clearly tended to be more satisfied with their relationships.

In contrast, those who were better at spotting stronger negative emotions, like anger and contempt, had weaker relationships.

Dr Bonnie Le, the study’s first author, explained the reason:

“If you are appeasing with your partner — or feel embarrassed or bashful — and your partner accurately picks up on this, it can signal to your partner that you care about their feelings and recognize a change request might be hurtful.

Or if your partner is angry or contemptuous — what we call dominance emotions — that signals very different, negative information that may hurt a partner if they accurately perceive it.”

Reading embarrassment and shame

The study included 11 couples who had dated for an average of three years.

They were asked to discuss what aspects of their partner they wanted to change.

Naturally, this raised some strong emotions which the researchers asked the couples about after the discussion.

This procedure simulates a common way of dealing with relationship conflict: by asking your partner to change.

The results showed that couples able to read emotions like sadness, embarrassment and shame had stronger relationships.

This is probably because being able to read these emotions helps difficult discussions — like those requesting change — to go more smoothly.

However, reacting more strongly to anger and contempt likely derails difficult discussions early on.

Professor Stéphane Côté, study co-author, said:

“We think reading emotions allows partners to coordinate what they do and say to each other, and perhaps that is helpful when appeasement emotions are read, but not when anger emotions are read.

Anger seems to overpower any effect of reading emotions, which is consistent with lots of research findings on how anger harms relationships.”

Direct communication is the best way to get a partner to change.

It must be done sensitively, though, said Dr Le:

“It’s not bad to feel a little bashful or embarrassed when raising these issues because it signals to the partner that you care and it’s valuable for your partner to see that.

You acknowledge that what you raise may hurt their feelings.

It shows that you are invested, that you are committed to having this conversation, and committed to not hurting them.

And the extent to which this is noted by your partner may foster a more positive relationship.”

The study was published in the journal Psychological Science (Le et al., 2020).

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AI’s Impact on Video Marketing in 2023 & Beyond

In a world dominated by video marketing, artificial intelligence (AI) plays a role, in transforming the industry. By improving customer experiences increasing engagement and providing content AI is reshaping video marketing strategies both now and, in the future.

Let’s start with some overall stats,

In fact, 96% of marketers have already witnessed the positive return on investment (ROI) that AI-powered video marketing brings. In general, nowadays, 75.7% of marketers are using AI tools for work.

So, let’s dive into how AI is transforming the landscape of video marketing strategies and explore its exciting future.

What is Video Marketing?

Video marketing is a tactic that companies employ to connect with their desired audiences showcase their offerings and transform viewers into customers. This approach encompasses the creation and dissemination of captivating videos, on platforms to convey messages and establish brand awareness.

The Impact of Video Marketing is Undeniable

Heightened Brand Awareness: Research reveals that video marketing contributes significantly to enhancing brand awareness, with 64% of marketers acknowledging its effectiveness.

Videos are dominating the content marketing industry!

Videos possess a unique power to captivate attention, narrate a brand’s story, and leave an enduring imprint on viewers. By leveraging visual and auditory elements, videos enable brands to stand out amidst fierce market competition.

Amplified Conversions: Valuable consumer insights from 2022 demonstrate the ability of video marketing to bolster conversion rates. Videos have the power to inspire and prompt viewers into action be it making a purchase subscribing to a newsletter or establishing a connection, with a company.

However, that depends on the production quality,

By showcasing products or services in action and addressing customer pain points, videos become a persuasive catalyst for driving conversions.

Elevated Engagement: videos, be short form or long, have the most power to keep audacious captivated for a long time. People spend an amount of time on social media watching videos, which demonstrates the appeal and effectiveness of this medium. Videos provide an experience by combining visuals, audio, and storytelling making it more engaging and interactive.

People spend an amount of time on social media watching videos, which demonstrates the appeal and effectiveness of this medium. Videos provide an experience by combining visuals, audio, and storytelling making it more engaging and interactive.

Unforgettable Brand Recall: Videos leave a lasting imprint in viewers’ minds, significantly enhancing brand recall. Compared to text or images alone, videos exhibit a higher recall rate.

Videos create a lasting impression, on viewers by using captivating visuals, storytelling techniques, and emotional connections. This ensures that the brand stays at the forefront of their minds when making purchasing decisions.

Heightened Social Media Activity: The pandemic has amplified the significance of video marketing, leading to a surge in social media activity. As social media platforms prioritize video content, consumer behavior has shifted accordingly.

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Knowing how to use your data is half the battle—first you have to know how to collect it. And when you have data coming from a plethora of sources, it can be really hard to manage.

Getting a holistic, bird’s-eye view of your business through meaningful data is what allows you to make more informed decisions. Thus, having a central place where you can import multiple streams of data, clean it up and transform it, and then load it into a beautiful, story-telling dashboard or spreadsheet, is paramount.

For these very reasons, is an impressive platform. From its super simple dashboard to its creation of multi-source data flows via LookerStudio integrations, it may have everything you need to analyze all aspects of your business. logo for Quick Sprout review. logo for Quick Sprout review.

Who Is For is the ideal data platform for anyone drowning in disparate data streams. Whether you’re an entrepreneur juggling multiple business platforms or a marketing analyst tracking cross-channel campaigns, consolidates everything into one intuitive command center.

Say you’re a startup founder trying to get an overview of your entire business operations. You may use Shopify for ecommerce, Slack for team communication, and Google Analytics for website traffic. Manually compiling reports for all of these individually could be a nightmare. With, you can effortlessly integrate data from each source into beautiful dashboards and spreadsheets.

Marketers can use to connect data from digital campaigns, social platforms, and web analytics. It delivers unified insights to pinpoint your most effective strategies. You’ll know in one glance if Facebook ads are driving better ROI than Google ads, and if your…

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How to Find Happiness in Leadership

How to Find Happiness in Leadership

The following readers won copies of The Vagrant because they left a comment on yesterday’s post:

  1. Jenny Lloyd
  2. Kellie Hanna-Miller
  3. Dave Gibson
  4. Matt Chauncey
  5. Darlene Santana

Last chance. We’re giving away 5 more copies today!

The pursuit of happiness makes you miserable. I am unhappy when I focus on happiness.

Happiness is a primary concern but a secondary pursuit.

Happiness is a primary concern but a secondary pursuit. Image of a happy child.

Reject the pursuit of happiness:

“Ask yourself if you are happy, and you cease to be so.” John Stuart Mill, the most influential English language philosopher of the nineteenth century.

Mill asked himself, “Suppose that all your objects of life were realized … would this be a great happiness to you?” His answer was NO. It sent him into a tailspin during the winter of 1826-1827.

He writes that he felt he could not go on in his autobiography.

Mill discovered that happiness is not something to be pursued.

Choose happiness: happiness is experienced directly but pursued indirectly. Image of a happy seal.

Quotes about happiness in leadership:

“You don’t become happy by pursuing happiness. You become happy by living a life that means something.” Harold S. Kushner

Meaning is, “… using your signature strengths in the service of something larger than you are.” Martin Seligman

Put simply, meaning includes contributing. Tom Rath says we should move beyond “You are what you do” to “You are how you help.” Life’s ultimate question is “How do you contribute?”

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: What are you doing for others?” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Kinds of happiness -

Stephen Hawkin on happiness:

“After my expectations were reduced to zero, every new day became a bonus. And I began to appreciate everything I did have. While there is life there is hope.” Daily Record

“I’m happier now than before I developed the condition (ALS).” Daily Mail


Focus on your contribution, not your happiness.

What are you doing when time stands still? When you forget yourself? How could you do more of that? It might be art, community service, study, mentoring, or leading a team.

Happy people deliver better results. (Shawn Achor)

When do you notice happiness sneaking up on you?

Let Yourself Be Happy

How to Tap the Power of Permission for Happiness – Leadership Freak

We’re choosing 5 people who leave a comment on today’s post to receive a complimentary copy…

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3 Fascinating Signs Of High IQ: From Bedtime To Sense Of Humour

How your sense of humour, what time you go to bed and your curiosity reveal your intelligence.

Being curious, staying up late and having a dark sense of humour are all signs of a high IQ, psychological research finds.

People who are curious ask lots of questions, look for surprises, seek out sensations and make time to search out new ideas, a study finds.

Intelligence, along with curiosity and some personality factors, predicts successful performance in many areas.

Night owl

Being a night owl, meanwhile, is linked to stronger reasoning and better analytical and conceptual thinking.

Night owls prefer to stay up late at night and rise later in the morning.

Around one-third of the population are night owls, with one-quarter preferring to rise early.

The remainder fall somewhere in between, being neither early risers nor late sleepers.

Dark humour

Liking dark humour is a sign of higher intelligence, research finds.

Dark humour, the study’s authors write, is:

“…a kind of humour that treats sinister subjects like death, disease, deformity, handicap or warfare with bitter amusement and presents such tragic, distressing or morbid topics in humorous terms.

Black humour, often called grotesque, morbid, gallows or sick humour, is used to express the absurdity, insensitivity, paradox and cruelty of the modern world.

Characters or situations are usually exaggerated far beyond the limits of normal satire or irony, potentially requiring increased cognitive efforts to get the joke.”

Surprisingly, though, people who like dark humour feel the least aggressive towards others.

In other words, it is not aggressive people who like sick jokes.

Dark humour, it seems, is more difficult to enjoy without higher intelligence.

The study was published in the journals Perspectives on Psychological Science, Personality and Individual Differences & Cognitive Processing (Díaz-Morales & Escribano, 2013; von Stumm et al., 2011; Willinger et al., 2017).

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Are Skill Gaps Holding Back Your Social Media Marketing Team’s Potential?

Social media is one of the most quickly evolving areas of digital marketing. So, your social media marketing team needs to keep pace with customers and competitors alike. 

From new social platforms and changing algorithms to the latest technologies and trends, marketing is unforgivingly fast-paced. It comes as no surprise that social media marketers are struggling to keep up. 

In a recent survey by The Social Club, it was found that the accelerated pace of social platforms is becoming overwhelming for social media marketers. 81% admitted that it was a struggle to stay on top of the latest trends and technologies.

Other marketers struggle to develop the wide range of must-have marketing skills needed to perform the diverse role. 

As a result, performance, knowledge, and skills gaps can grow within social media marketing teams—and they can wreak havoc. Luckily, you can combat gaps by identifying and addressing them in a variety of ways.

So, let’s discuss how you can identify and tackle gaps within your team. And in doing so, how you improve productivity, future-proof your business, and equip your team to meet social media marketing goals.

Evaluate Your Team’s Skill Sets & Experience

Before you can identify skills gaps, you need to establish the skills and experience your team currently possesses. 

So, start by conducting an in-depth evaluation of your team’s current skill sets, experience, and knowledge. This will present you with a comprehensive inventory of skills that you can align with your business goals. 

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Ultimately, it helps you determine where your team thrives and where it falls short.

But how do you go about this? 

As a best practice, consider using several different methods of evaluation to get a reliable picture of your team’s current skill set. For example, you might:

Create a Formal Test

Formal tests can be used to assess the technical and theoretical competency of your employees. For example, you can test how effectively employees are able to use a certain tool. Or, you can assess how aptly they identify a particular framework and apply it to a situation. 

While this is a popular evaluation method, there are some limitations to consider. 

Formal test conditions don’t always present a reliable picture of proficiency. Some people perform worse in test conditions due to stress and anxiety. Other people might display competency in test settings but are unable to apply this knowledge in real-life scenarios. 

So, consider using formal tests alongside the two other evaluation methods that we’re going to discuss…

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Should You Start Blogging? 5 Questions to Ask First

Blogging changed my life.

I learned how online marketing worked by building an international affairs blog in college.

Then I started a personal blog on marketing. This got me my first startup marketing job from Neil Patel.

I used that company blog to generate 8,000 leads per month for a SaaS company. Then I switched to an info-product company and used their blog to drive over 40,000 leads per month. These engines fueled multi-million dollar companies.

Then I cofounded Stone Press which manages a blog portfolio. We’ve taken multiple blogs from zero to millions of dollars of revenue per year.

I’m even building a brand new blog from scratch: HR Advice. A first-hand reminder of the anxiety-filled grind that a new blog requires.

So I know a few things about starting and running blogs.

But is this blog journey a good one for you?

Maybe, maybe not.

Before jumping in, ask yourself these questions.

Do You Enjoy Writing?

I get asked all the time by startup founders: “Lars, which channel should I focus on? Blogging? YouTube? LinkedIn? Events? Podcasts?”

And I always give the same answer: pick the channel you can stick with.

The honest truth is that all of our content sucks at the beginning. Take any youtuber, podcaster, streamer, blogging, whatever. Then go look at some of the first stuff they posted.


My stuff too. It’s so bad that I can’t bring myself to look at it anymore. I even deleted my first blog so I never had to look at those first blog posts ever again.

Whatever channel you pick, including blogging, you’re going to have to spend a ton of time perfecting your craft.

Marques Brownlee is probably the most popular tech reviewer on YouTube. He gets…

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A High-Fat Food That Reduces Blood Pressure

Two servings a day of this high-fat food could lower diabetes risk and reduce high blood pressure.

Eating more whole fat dairy is linked to a lower incidence of diabetes and hypertension, a study has found.

Having dairy products twice a day in your regular diet reduces the risk of high blood pressure and diabetes, the risk factors of Metabolic syndrome.

Diabetes, hypertension, and obesity together will lead to metabolic syndrome, a disorder that puts people at higher risk of heart disease and stroke.

Past studies suggest that higher consumption of dairy products  reduces the odds of high blood pressure, diabetes, and so metabolic syndrome.

This study suggests that full-fat dairy foods but not low-fat dairy have the strongest effect on lowering the incidence of metabolic syndrome and its related risk factors.

To test if this is true for populations in different countries, researchers included 21 countries on five continents.

Participants were between 35- and 70-years-old and the average follow-up was over nine years.

Dairy intake was either low-fat (1–2%) or whole-fat, including mixed dishes prepared with dairy ingredients, milk, yogurt, cheese, yogurt drinks, butter, and cream.

Average diary intake was 179 grams (g) per day, with whole-fat dairy intake counting almost twice as much as low-fat.

The standard serving and portion sizes were used, for example, 5 g for one teaspoon of butter, 15 g for a slice of cheese, and 244 g for a cup of yogurt or a glass of milk.

Compared with eating no dairy, two servings a day of dairy foods reduced the risk of metabolic syndrome by 24 percent and for whole-fat diary by 28 percent.

The likelihood of developing diabetes and hypertension was reduced up to 12 percent.

The risk was reduced to 14 percent with a dairy intake of 3 servings per day.

The authors concluded:

“If our findings are confirmed in sufficiently large and long term trials, then increasing dairy consumption may represent a feasible and low cost approach to reducing [metabolic syndrome], hypertension, diabetes, and ultimately cardiovascular disease events worldwide.”

The study was published in BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care (Bhavadharini et al., 2020).

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