Why do we hiccup? Some surprising unsolved mysteries and the bias against religion

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The humble hiccup has been one of science’s enduring mysteries. People from before birth to old age get hiccups from time to time. So do cats and rats. No one knows why or how to stop them.

In fact, an internist performed a five-year study involving fifty-four hospital patients with hiccups, attempting a wide range of treatments. None proved effective. 

Now a study led by University College London may have solved the mystery. Researchers monitoring thirteen newborn babies found that hiccupping triggered a large wave of brain signals that could aid their development. This brain activity might help babies learn to monitor their breathing muscles, leading to the ability to control their breathing voluntarily. 

However, hiccups have no known advantage for adults. Why, then, do we persist in them? 

It’s still a mystery. 

Is a recession coming? 

In other news, more than half of the world’s wealthiest investors are preparing for a drop in financial markets before the end of 2020, according to UBS Global Wealth Management. Investors are worried about the 2020 presidential election and the trade dispute between the US and China. 

In a survey of more than 3,400 high-net-worth individuals, more than 79 percent think markets are moving toward a period of higher volatility. About 55 percent of respondents expect a “significant drop” in the markets over the next fourteen months. 

However, the study was conducted between August and October following a volatile third quarter. Recent signs are already pointing to a firming US economy in the fourth quarter. A strong US labor market, robust consumer spending, an improving housing sector, and optimism on trade talks with China have combined with better-than-expected third-quarter earnings and a supportive interest-rate policy from the Federal Reserve. 

So, will the financial markets see a significant drop in the near future? 

It’s still a mystery. 

The “spiritual…

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