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Yawning: Puzzler of the Ages
Posted on Aug 13, 2014
Hippocrates took a crack at it, postulating that this mysterious activity was designed to flush harmful air from the body. Cut to the 19th century, when that notion lost traction.
So, the lingering question remains about an extremely common—and contagious—activity that humans share with animals of various stripes: What’s with the whole yawning thing?
This may not sound like the most pressing news of the day, and indeed it isn’t, but it’s probably a subject that just about everyone has mused about at one time or another, particularly when yawning purely in response to observing someone else’s yawn in close proximity. Or reading about yawning, for that matter.
The BBC drilled deeply into the subject in a recent report that offers a potential scientific breakthrough:
Before we get too conclusive, though, it should be noted that Gallup’s take on the topic has not encountered support from all corners of the scientific community. Others theorizing about the meaning of the activity link yawning to sex—so, it would seem, it might not signify boredom in every instance.
—Posted by Kasia Anderson
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