According to the first data of the eVisitor system, which contains tourist traffic realized in commercial and non-commercial facilities and nautical charter (eCrew system), during the Easter holidays and extended weekend, ie from 14 to 17 April, 117.288 arrivals and 399.921 overnight stays were realized in Croatia. Compared to Easter and the associated extended weekend last year, there is a high increase in arrivals of 68 percent and 94 percent in overnight stays!”The results for the first half of April are excellent and we believe that they will continue for the rest of the month. These figures are a true indicator that Croatia has something to offer outside the main part of the tourist year, and that it is becoming increasingly recognizable as a year-round destination. Before the Easter holidays, we had an increase in overnight stays of about 50 percent in April, which is an exceptional result, especially considering that April is the first month of the year in which multimillion overnight stays are realized. I believe that such good results will continue in the next two months before the summer season. Namely, the continuation of the growth of tourist traffic in the pre- and post-season is extremely important for increasing income in tourism and enabling active business for all tourism, but also other activities performed in addition to tourism that actively contribute to increasing the competitiveness of tourism and the entire Croatian economy.Said Tourism Minister Gary Cappelli.Most overnight stays in Istria and Dubrovnik During the period in question, most overnight stays were realized in Istria (134 thousand overnight stays), Kvarner (70 thousand overnight stays) and Dubrovnik-Neretva County (57 thousand overnight stays). They are followed by the Split-Dalmatia County with 47 thousand overnight stays, the Zadar County with 23 thousand overnight stays, the City of Zagreb with 20 thousand overnight stays, the Šibenik-Knin County with 14 thousand overnight stays and the Lika-Senj County with 9 thousand overnight stays. On the continent, most overnight stays were realized in Karlovac and Krapina-Zagorje counties with about 4 thousand overnight stays.Looking at destinations, most overnight stays were realized in Dubrovnik (44 thousand overnight stays), Poreč (28 thousand overnight stays) and Rovinj (26 thousand overnight stays), while by type of accommodation most overnight stays were realized in hotels (235 thousand overnight stays), household facilities 65 thousand overnight stays) and camps (48 thousand overnight stays).Germany, Austria, Italy remain the main emitting markets During this period, most overnight stays were realized by tourists from Germany (90 thousand overnight stays), Italy (41 thousand overnight stays), Austria (41 thousand overnight stays), France (16 thousand overnight stays) and Slovenia (15 thousand overnight stays), while domestic tourists realized 46 thousand nights. We add that the excellent results of tourist traffic achieved during the extended weekend confirm the announcements of a very successful month of April, which will be significantly better compared to last year, or during which double-digit increases in tourist traffic are also expected.
The small family camp Polidor in Istrian Funtana is recording excellent results, and with a capacity of 300 guests it is one of the few camps that is open all year round.It opened in July 2015 and has achieved 7.000 overnight stays in the last six months of that year. Already in 2016, it recorded an increasing trend of overnight stays, reaching the number of 24.000 overnight stays. Only from the beginning of October 2016 to the end of March, 3.360 overnight stays were realized, which proves that it is possible to extend the season more than the standard three months during the summer and increase the number of jobs throughout the year. By the way, 35 workers are employed in the camp during the full season.”This year we have 20-30 percent better booking, and in June we expect a growth of 60 percent”Gulia Ukušić from the Polidor camp points out and adds that June will be the most successful tourist month this year because of the guests from Germany and Austria who had the best dates for the holidays. Small family camps are a “new” tourist trend that certainly has its audience and its own story, and the biggest advantages are the personalized and closer approach as with the hosts in family accommodation, and the focus on quality, not quantity.15 million kuna invested in the opening of the camp, and this year they are investing an additional 4,5 million in swimming pools and luxury tentsCamp Polidor generates revenue of 2016 million kuna in 3,5, and this year, given the increase in capacity, it expects an increase of 10 percent. HRK 15 million has been invested in the project of opening the camp, and this year another HRK 4,5 million is being invested in additional facilities and accommodation facilities. Camp Polidor is preparing many novelties, and the most important is the construction of two swimming pools, one for adults and the other for children with water attractions, which together with the pool bar will open in April. In addition, seven new luxury mobile homes and 12 luxury glamping tents are being introduced this year, offering special breakfasts in baskets.In order to extend the season, ie to solve the problem of seasonality, we must sell diverse, authentic and quality content because the motive for coming is not accommodation, but a tourist destination. They are well aware of this in the Polidor camp, which, in cooperation with local entrepreneurs, sells various thematic content and additional content. “In the pre- and post-season, we work with local service providers and a variety of experiences, from bike and wine tours, fish picnics to touring various attractions, such as Dinopark for children or going fishing. We have to take advantage of all that is offered to us in the area, all the attractions and experiences because they motivate guests to come out of season. ” concludes Ukušić and adds that this year they have concluded various new partnerships from which they expect a lot and that now they just need to nicely pack the whole tourist story and just tell it to the guests.Polidor has already received numerous awards, among which INOVACAMP 2016 stands out for its innovative concept of providing high-quality personalized service. The owners of the camp cultivate a personalized approach to each guest, and the innovation is manifested primarily in the multi-purpose building with numerous facilities for guests in the winter months. In the heated rooms there is a bathroom with toilets for children and the disabled, showers, family bathroom, space for hand washing and dishes and even a shower for pets. The building also includes a children’s playroom with a large slide, a small fitness room, and massage and billiards areas. In the second building, on the other hand, there is a room for socializing with a fireplace and a TV for socializing in the winter. Near the camp there is a modern beach to which guests are transported by train.In addition to the quality accommodation that is taken for granted, in the Polidor camp they sell quality service and content and through synergy with other local entrepreneurs make a winning combination and formula for a great tourist story. See how they do it on the camp website www.campingpolidor.com, which is more than modern and functional, which is certainly the point of the “and” of this great tourist story.
Share on Twitter LinkedIn Email Share on Facebook “Unlike previous studies, ours is able to show that millennials’ lower religious involvement is due to cultural change, not to millennials being young and unsettled,” said Twenge, who is also the author of “Generation Me.”“Millennial adolescents are less religious than Boomers and GenX’ers were at the same age,” Twenge continued. “We also looked at younger ages than the previous studies. More of today’s adolescents are abandoning religion before they reach adulthood, with an increasing number not raised with religion at all.”Compared to the late 1970s, twice as many 12th graders and college students never attend religious services, and 75 percent more 12th graders say religion is “not important at all” in their lives. Compared to the early 1980s, twice as many high school seniors and three times as many college students in the 2010s answered “none” when asked their religion.Compared to the 1990s, 20 percent fewer college students described themselves as above average in spirituality, suggesting that religion has not been replaced with spirituality.“These trends are part of a larger cultural context, a context that is often missing in polls about religion,” Twenge said. “One context is rising individualism in U.S. culture. Individualism puts the self first, which doesn’t always fit well with the commitment to the institution and other people that religion often requires. As Americans become more individualistic, it makes sense that fewer would commit to religion.” Pinterest In what may be the largest study ever conducted on changes in Americans’ religious involvement, researchers led by San Diego State University psychology professor Jean M. Twenge found that millennials are the least religious generation of the last six decades, and possibly in the nation’s history.The researchers — including Ramya Sastry from SDSU, Julie J. Exline and Joshua B. Grubbs from Case Western Reserve University and W. Keith Campbell from the University of Georgia — analyzed data from 11.2 million respondents from four nationally representative surveys of U.S. adolescents ages 13 to 18 taken between 1966 and 2014.Recent adolescents are less likely to say that religion is important in their lives, report less approval of religious organizations, and report being less spiritual and spending less time praying or meditating. The results were published this month in the journal PLOS One. Share
The study found that by manipulating the activity of Activin receptors — receptors found in the brain — the researchers were able to increase or decrease cocaine-taking and relapse behavior in animal models. The study focused, specifically, on Activin receptors in regions of the brain that are involved in pleasure and reward.“There are changes in the brain caused by drug use that occur and persist, but are only unmasked after withdrawal from a drug — in this case, cocaine,” Dietz says. “Cocaine use alters the connections between certain neurons through changes in the shape of the cells.”The researchers discovered that the Activin pathway controls the ability of cocaine to induce this change in the neurons and determined that the Activin receptor may control this response to cocaine by regulating the expression of a number of genes.“Understanding this critical pathway will help us pursue new directions in potential pharmacological and gene therapies to prevent drug relapses,” Dietz says. “If we can control this pathway, we may be able to help prevent relapses in people who have been abstinent from cocaine.” Share on Facebook Pinterest Share LinkedIn Email Share on Twitter Researchers at the University at Buffalo have discovered a previously unknown neural pathway that can regulate changes made in the brain due to cocaine use, providing new insight into the molecular basis of cocaine addiction.“Addiction is a life-long affliction manifested by episodes of relapse, despite prolonged abstinence,” says Amy Gancarz, PhD, lead author of the study, which was published on June 1 in an Advance Online Publication in Nature Neuroscience. “There is a need to more fully understand the long-term molecular changes in the brain involved in drug craving and relapse.”Gancarz, a former postdoctoral associate with the UB Research Institute on Addictions (RIA), worked on the study under the direction of senior author David Dietz, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology in UB’s School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. Dietz is also a faculty member in UB’s Neuroscience Program and an affiliated scientist with RIA.
Hormone signals that modulate feeding and exercise are in fact believed to be closely linked. Endurance running capacity in mammals, particularly humans, is thought to have evolved to maximize the chances of finding food. This study suggests that leptin plays a critical role both in regulating energy balance and encouraging behaviours that are “rewarding” for the person’s metabolism, i.e., engaging in physical activity to find food.The researchers studied voluntary wheel running in mice in cages. These mice can run up to seven kilometres a day. In a laboratory, the physical activity of normal mice was compared with that of mice who underwent a genetic modification to suppress a molecule activated by leptin, STAT3 (signal transducer and activator of transcription-3). The STAT3 molecule is found in the neurons that synthesize dopamine in the midbrain. This “mesolimbic dopaminergic pathway” is a like a motivational highway in the brain.“Mice that do not have the STAT3 molecule in the dopaminergic neurons run substantially more. Conversely, normal mice are less active because leptin then activates STAT3 in the dopamine neurons, signalling that energy reserves in the body are sufficient and that there is no need to get active and go looking for food”, explained Maria Fernanda Fernandes, first author of the study.And is leptin as important for motivation to be active in humans? Yes. “Previous studies have clearly shown a correlation between leptin and marathon run times. The lower leptin levels are, the better the performance. Our study on mice suggests that this molecule is also involved in the rewarding effects experienced when we do physical exercise. We speculate that for humans, low leptin levels increase motivation to exercise and make it easier to get a runner’s high”, summed up Stephanie Fulton.Mice, humans and mammals in general are thought to have evolved to increase the return on effective food acquisition behaviours. Ultimately, hormones are sending the brain a clear message: when food is scarce, it’s fun to run to chase some down. Pinterest Share on Twitter LinkedIn The joy of running. That sense of well-being, freedom and extra energy that runners often experience is not just a matter of endorphins. A study at the University of Montreal Hospital Research Centre (CRCHUM) shows that the “runner’s high” phenomenon is also caused by dopamine, an important neurotransmitter for motivation.“We discovered that the rewarding effects of endurance activity are modulated by leptin, a key hormone in metabolism. Leptin inhibits physical activity through dopamine neurons in the brain”, said Stephanie Fulton, a researcher at the CRCHUM and lead author of an article published today in the journal Cell Metabolism.Secreted by adipose tissue, leptin helps control the feeling of satiety. This hormone also influences physical activity. “The more fat there is, the more leptin there is and and the less we feel like eating. Our findings now show that this hormone also plays a vital role in motivation to run, which may be related to searching for food”, explained Stephanie Fulton, who is also a professor at Université de Montréal’s Department of Nutrition. Email Share Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter Share LinkedIn Pinterest Email Share on Facebook Educational neuroscience has little to offer schools or children’s education, according to new research from the University of Bristol, UK.In a controversial research paper published in Psychological Review, Professor Jeffrey Bowers of Bristol’s School of Experimental Psychology warns that schools are investing in expensive interventions because they claim a neuroscientific basis. However, the paper points out that understanding the role of different structures of the brain does not actually help improve teaching or assessing how children progress in a classroom setting.Professor Bowers said: “Educational neuroscience only tells us what we know already or gives us information that is irrelevant. The problems faced by classroom teachers dealing with learning difficulties can only be diagnosed and addressed through behavioural methods.” Examples of pointless educational neuroscience findings highlighted by Professor Bowers include:Using brain scans to detect whether dyslexic children have improved their reading skills, rather than testing these children’s reading skillsDescribing learning as ‘brain-enabled’Recommending interventions that require struggling children to do more of what they are bad at, rather than finding alternative routes to learning that involve identifying and playing to children’s strengths.Professor Bowers said: “Head teachers should avoid all teaching methods that are marketed on the basis of neuroscience and pay attention to whether the methods improve performance, as assessed in randomized control trials.”Professor Bowers is an investigator in the University of Bristol’s ‘Morph Project’ testing a new literacy intervention to help struggling readers in years 3 to 4.
Pinterest Analysis of the results showed that peppermint tea significantly improved long term memory, working memory and alertness compared to both chamomile and hot water. Chamomile tea significantly slowed memory and attention speed compared to both peppermint and hot water.Dr Mark Moss said: “It’s interesting to see the contrasting effects on mood and cognition of the two different herbal teas. The enhancing and arousing effects of peppermint and the calming/sedative effects of chamomile observed in this study are in keeping with the claimed properties of these herbs and suggest beneficial effects can be drawn from their use.” Share on Facebook Peppermint tea can improve long-term and working memory and in healthy adults.This is the finding of a study by Dr Mark Moss, Robert Jones and Lucy Moss of Northumbria University who presented their research at the British Psychological Society’s Annual Conference in Nottingham.A total of 180 participants were randomly allocated to receive a drink of peppermint tea, chamomile tea or hot water. Before they consumed their drink they completed questionnaires relating to their mood. After a twenty minute rest the participants completed tests that assessed their memory and a range of other cognitive functions. Following the tests participants completed another mood questionnaire. Email Share Share on Twitter LinkedIn
LinkedIn Email Share on Twitter Pinterest “ADHD is such a major issue, but no one seemed to be able to give a very definite answer to the long-term effect of the medication,” said Chorniy, who conducted the research with Leah Kitashima, a Ph.D. candidate at Clemson University. “For our sample population, we were able to see everyone who had an ADHD diagnosis and track their health over time to identify any potential benefits of the medication or the lack of thereof.”Compared with children who were diagnosed with ADHD but did not receive medication, those who took medication were 3.6 percentage points less likely to contract a sexually transmitted disease, 7.3 percentage points less likely to have a substance-abuse disorder and 2.3 percentage points less likely to be injured. In absolute numbers in a sample of about 14,000 teens diagnosed with ADHD, it translates into 512 fewer teens contracting an STD and 998 fewer having a substance abuse disorder. There also would be 6,122 fewer yearly injury cases for children and teens under 19 years old.The research is described in an article by Chorniy and Kitashima titled “Sex, Drugs, and ADHD: The Effects of ADHD pharmacological treatment on teens’ risky behaviors” published online this month by the journal Labour Economics. The work was supported by a grant from the Social Security Administration to the National Bureau of Economic Research.While previous research has demonstrated the effectiveness of medications in treating the core symptoms of ADHD, little has been known about the effects of treatment on health, behavioral and educational outcomes in the long run. Evidence so far points to positive effects on some outcomes but not others. A 2014 paper by Princeton economist Janet Currie and other researchers found such treatment was actually associated with a decrease in academic performance, a deterioration in relationship with parents and an increased likelihood of depression. Other work has shown some reduction in hospital visits and police interactions.“Many professionals and parents still doubt the existence of beneficial long-term effects of ADHD medication,” said Helena Skyt Nielsen, a professor in the Department of Economics and Business at Aarhus University in Denmark who has studied ADHD treatment in children but wasn’t involved in this research. “Therefore, it is extremely important to collect more hard evidence on the impact of ADHD medication. Chorniy’s paper is a great example that non-experimental impact assessments are very informative about the consequences of ADHD medication.”The current paper is the first of several research projects in which Chorniy paints a clearer picture of how ADHD is diagnosed and treated, as well as the associated short- and long-term effects of medication. One paper in the works with Currie combines South Carolina Medicaid claims, Vital Statistics records, Department of Education, and Department of Juvenile Justice data to provide an explanation for the rise in ADHD diagnoses and treatment, and look at the effects of recently approved medications for ADHD.“I think all these papers together will give us a clearer picture of the reasons behind ADHD’s explosion and the effects of ADHD medication,” Chorniy said. “Given that disadvantaged children and teens enrolled in Medicaid, a public insurance program, are disproportionately diagnosed with ADHD, these are important policy questions to address: why are there more children taking ADHD drugs today than a decade ago, what benefits do they deliver and at what cost.” Share Share on Facebook New research provides some of the first evidence that medications taken by millions of American children to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) offer long-term benefits.Based on an analysis of Medicaid claims for nearly 150,000 children diagnosed with ADHD in South Carolina between 2003 and 2013, researchers including Princeton University postdoctoral associate Anna Chorniy found treatment with ADHD medication made children less likely to suffer consequences of risky behaviors such as sexually transmitted diseases, substance abuse during their teen years and injuries.Eleven percent of children in the United States ages 4-17 have been diagnosed with ADHD and almost 70 percent of them are treated with medications. Children who are diagnosed with ADHD — a chronic condition characterized by attention difficulty and/or hyperactivity and impulsiveness — are known to be at higher risk for risky behaviors such as dangerous driving, drug use and risky sexual behavior.
“The major advancement of this new tool is the ability to use a low-cost and accessible imaging method such as EEG to depict deeply located brain activity,” said both senior author Dr. Talma Hendler of Tel-Aviv University in Israel and The Sagol Brain Center at Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, and first author Jackob Keynan, a PhD student in Hendler’s laboratory, in an email to Biological Psychiatry.The researchers built upon a new imaging tool they had developed in a previous study that uses EEG to measure changes in amygdala activity, indicated by its “electrical fingerprint”. With the new tool, 42 participants were trained to reduce an auditory feedback corresponding to their amygdala activity using any mental strategies they found effective.During this neurofeedback task, the participants learned to modulate their own amygdala electrical activity. This also led to improved downregulation of blood-oxygen level dependent signals of the amygdala, an indicator of regional activation measured with fMRI.In another experiment with 40 participants, the researchers showed that learning to downregulate amygdala activity could actually improve behavioral emotion regulation. They showed this using a behavioral task invoking emotional processing in the amygdala. The findings show that with this new imaging tool, people can modify both the neural processes and behavioral manifestations of their emotions.“We have long known that there might be ways to tune down the amygdala through biofeedback, meditation, or even the effects of placebos,” said John Krystal, Editor of Biological Psychiatry. “It is an exciting idea that perhaps direct feedback on the level of activity of the amygdala can be used to help people gain control of their emotional responses.”The participants in the study were healthy, so the tool still needs to be tested in the context of real-life trauma. However, according to the authors, this new method has huge clinical implications.The approach “holds the promise of reaching anyone anywhere,” said Hendler and Keynan. The mobility and low cost of EEG contribute to its potential for a home-stationed bedside treatment for recent trauma patients or for stress resilience training for people prone to trauma. Share on Twitter LinkedIn Training the brain to treat itself is a promising therapy for traumatic stress. The training uses an auditory or visual signal that corresponds to the activity of a particular brain region, called neurofeedback, which can guide people to regulate their own brain activity.However, treating stress-related disorders requires accessing the brain’s emotional hub, the amygdala, which is located deep in the brain and difficult to reach with typical neurofeedback methods. This type of activity has typically only been measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), which is costly and poorly accessible, limiting its clinical use.A study published in the current issue of Biological Psychiatry tested a new imaging method that provided reliable neurofeedback on the level of amygdala activity using electroencephalography (EEG), and allowed people to alter their own emotional responses through self-regulation of its activity. Share Email Share on Facebook Pinterest
Share on Facebook Researchers collected data on 525,046 patients (ages 40-80) from two large secondary care Scottish hospitals. They selected 144,066 patients being treated for hypertension with either angiotensin antagonists, beta blocker, calcium channel blockers or thiazide diuretics. They were compared to a group of 111,936 patients not taking any of those drugs. Researchers followed the patients for five years documenting hospitalization for mood disorders, such as depression or bipolar disorder. After more than 90 days on the antihypertensive medications, they found:There were 299 hospital admissions, predominantly due to major depression, among the patients studied, at an average 2.3 years after patients began antihypertensive treatment.Patients on beta-blockers and calcium antagonists were at two-fold increased risk of hospital admission for mood disorder, compared to patients on angiotensin antagonists (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin-receptor blockers).Patients on angiotensin antagonists had the lowest risk for hospitalization with mood disorders compared to patients on other blood pressure meds and patients on no antihypertensive therapy.Patients taking thiazide diuretics showed the same risk for mood disorders compared to patients taking no antihypertensive meds.The presence of co-existing medical conditions increased the risk of mood disorders.These findings suggest that angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin-receptor blockers that are used to treat hypertension may be useful as new or “repurposed” treatments for mood disorders, according to Padmanabhan.“It is important that these results are validated in independent studies. This is a single center study, which looked at the risk of the more severe forms of mood disorders requiring hospitalization. It would be important to study the effect of these drugs on minor to modest changes in mood, as these will have an impact on the quality of life among hypertensive patients,” he said. Email Pinterest Share on Twitter Four commonly prescribed blood pressure medications may impact mood disorders such as depression or bipolar disorder, according to new research in the American Heart Association’s journal Hypertension.In this first study, that compared four common classes of antihypertensive drugs and risk of mood disorders, two drugs were associated with an increased risk for mood disorders, while one appears to decrease mood disorder risk, according to Sandosh Padmanabhan, M.D., Ph.D., study author and Professor at the Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences, University of Glasgow in Glasgow, United Kingdom.“Mental health is under-recognized in hypertension clinical practice, and the possible impact of antihypertensive drugs on mental health is an area that physicians should be aware of and consider if the treatment of high blood pressure is having a negative impact on their patient’s mental health,” Padmanabhan said. LinkedIn Share