This is easily the only most interesting science article I’ve read today, from the Frontal Cortex blog. I’ve pasted the opening paragraph below. Can you guess what the ‘activity’ might be…?
I’d like to tell you a story about a routine of modern life that is really bad for your brain. Everybody performs this activity – sometimes multiple times a day! – and yet we rarely realize the consequences. In 2008, scientists at the University of Michigan did a very clever study illuminating how this activity led to dramatic decreases in working memory, self-control, visual attention and positive affect. Other studies have demonstrated that people who are less exposed to this activity show enhanced brain function. They are better able to focus and even recover more quickly in hospitals.
Read the answer (and the rest of the article, if you can concentrate long enough) here.