By Alyson Rich
No. If you thought that humans only use 10 percent of their brain, don’t feel bad because Hollywood got it wrong, too. The plot of the 2014 movie Lucy is that a woman named Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) is unwillingly exposed to a drug that allows her to unlock more than 10 percent of her brain. The movie then follows her progression as she exacts revenge on her kidnappers, all the while gaining access to more and more of her brain. An interesting story, but the science behind it is all wrong.
Even when resting, your brain is still hard at work. According to neurologist John Henley from the Mayo Clinic, “evidence [from brain imaging studies] would show over a day you use 100 percent of the brain”. This does not mean that all of the brain is active all of the time. That would be like living in a gigantic mansion and paying for every room to be heated, including the ones that are rarely used. The human body has evolved to be cost-efficient because even the most basic tasks require a surprisingly large amount of energy. Some may point out that as our systems gain this energy through ingesting and digesting, we should simply eat more. Problem solved? Nope, because bringing in and breaking down food also requires energy. It is one of those “two steps forward, one step back” situations. As it is not practical to spend all our time eating, we force our bodies to prioritize sustaining only the areas that are relevant to current or impending tasks.
From reading this you can now honestly declare that you know something Albert Einstein did not. Einstein believed the myth, and explained his intellect by claiming that he could access more than the standard 10 percent. For a different explanation debunking this myth, watch the attached video:
For more information, go to: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/do-people-only-use-10-percent-of-their-brains/
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