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What Happens When You Get the Wind Knocked Out of You?

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You know that feeling. Whether it was because the school bully socked you in the stomach really hard, or you jumped off the garage roof with a parachute made from a bath towel (hey, I was just a kid), most of us experienced that breathless moment of having the wind knocked out of us at least once. What is it exactly, and why is it so painful?

Medical types call this phenomenon a "diaphragm spasm." The diaphragm is a large, dome-shaped muscle located underneath our lungs. When we inhale, we're actually constricting the diaphragm, which draws the lungs down and expands the rib cage. This action creates a temporary vacuum, which is what pulls air through our noses and down to our lungs. When we exhale, the diaphragm relaxes and the lungs deflate.

If you get a good, hard blow to the solar plexus, it can temporarily paralyze the diaphragm. The punch also empties all the air out of the lungs (probably accompanied by an audible "Ooooof!") and sends the diaphragm into a spasm; it contracts, and stays that way. While the diaphragm remains paralyzed, your lungs can't inflate and you are unable to breathe. The nerves around that area are sending intense pain messages to your brain, but all you want to do is catch your breath. A momentary sense of panic ensues. Luckily, you usually recover in a minute or so, but the sensation is scary enough to keep most kids off the garage roof a second time.

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Perfect cookies are within your grasp. Just grab your measuring cups and get started. Special thanks to the Institute of Culinary Education.

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Netflix's Most-Binged Shows of 2017, Ranked
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Netflix might know your TV habits better than you do. Recently, the entertainment company's normally tight-lipped number-crunchers looked at user data collected between November 1, 2016 and November 1, 2017 to see which series people were powering through and which ones they were digesting more slowly. By analyzing members’ average daily viewing habits, they were able to determine which programs were more likely to be “binged” (or watched for more than two hours per day) and which were more often “savored” (or watched for less than two hours per day) by viewers.

They found that the highest number of Netflix bingers glutted themselves on the true crime parody American Vandal, followed by the Brazilian sci-fi series 3%, and the drama-mystery 13 Reasons Why. Other shows that had viewers glued to the couch in 2017 included Anne with an E, the Canadian series based on L. M. Montgomery's 1908 novel Anne of Green Gables, and the live-action Archie comics-inspired Riverdale.

In contrast, TV shows that viewers enjoyed more slowly included the Emmy-winning drama The Crown, followed by Big Mouth, Neo Yokio, A Series of Unfortunate Events, GLOW, Friends from College, and Ozark.

There's a dark side to this data, though: While the company isn't around to judge your sweatpants and the chip crumbs stuck to your couch, Netflix is privy to even your most embarrassing viewing habits. The company recently used this info to publicly call out a small group of users who turned their binges into full-fledged benders:

Oh, and if you're the one person in Antarctica binging Shameless, the streaming giant just outed you, too.

Netflix broke down their full findings in the infographic below and, Big Brother vibes aside, the data is pretty fascinating. It even includes survey data on which shows prompted viewers to “Netflix cheat” on their significant others and which shows were enjoyed by the entire family.

Netflix infographic "The Year in Bingeing"
Netflix

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