Meet Mark

Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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Month: January 2007

The Buckler Brief

EVERYTHING YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT: PANTOTHENIC ACID

WHAT IT IS: Part of the B-complex of vitamins, Pantothenic Acid is a water-soluble vitamin. This particular B is unique because it forms two co-enzymes, making it a vital component of good supplementation.

WHAT IT DOES: Pantothenic acid helps to oxidize fatty acids and sugars (part of the fueling process that gives us energy). Pantothenic acid also serves many other important functions.

To name a few: synthesizing fatty acids, lipids, cholesterol, hormones, proteins and ketones (the unfortunate byproduct of proteins). Especially for athletes and those who consume large amounts of protein, pantothenic acid is essential. Fortunately, it’s difficult to become deficient in pantothenic acid, but many people do not derive enough from their daily diets.

STUDIES SHOW: Pantothenic acid is a cofactor, which means it assists in a variety of essential enzyme functions. Because of its role in metabolizing fats and cholesterol, pantothenic acid is thought to help reduce high cholesterol levels.

Pantothenic acid may also help to increase energy, especially in aerobic exertion, because the acid may help to break down lactic acid, which often builds up in muscles. Experts also think that pantothenic acid may be one of the key cofactors involved in ATP production.

WHY WE LIKE IT: There are many reasons to make pantothenic acid part of your supplement regimen. Aside from helping to reduce cholesterol and the potential energy-boost, pantothenic acid is thought to be an excellent therapy for those suffering from arthritis. Many experts also think people suffering from anxiety, depression, and stress may benefit from simply upping their pantothenic acid intake.

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The Tuesday 10

The Top 10 Tips for: Getting Fit

Wanna get fit? If you’re just starting out, keep in mind it’s not going to happen overnight…but you can be lookin’ pretty good by next month with these tips. The reason most get-ripped regimens fail is because we simply expect way too much, way too soon. Big changes in your body require big changes in your lifestyle. Period. It took your whole life to be the way you are now, right? It’s going to take more than two days to start making changes to that. But these 10 pointers will get you started – and you’ll notice some very pleasant effects if you stick with them. You’ll be surprised that very few of them have anything to do with lifting so much as a finger. Fitness is many factors coming together – it’s a lot more than just hitting the gym (thank goodness).

1. Cut calories the lazy way.

To shape up, you must reduce your fat so your muscles can start doing their thing. This is actually very, very easy to do: every time you go to put something in your mouth, don’t. No, no, just kidding! You have to eat.

Here’s what to do:

– in restaurants, eat half the plate and get the rest to go. Don’t eat it when you get home – let the dog or the neighbor kid with hollow legs enjoy it.

– immediately run out and get yourself some 7″ plates. Those are now your dinner plates. Preso, portion sizes reduced.

– Don’t eat anything crunchy, creamy, pale or fried. This pretty much takes care of all high-calorie, unhealthy foods. Examples: chips, ranch dressing, bread sticks, chicken nuggets. We know, veggies are crunchy. It’s not an absolute rule. Just a guide.

– Switch all snacks to cherry tomatoes, carrot sticks or broccoli florets. Depending on how much you snack, you’ll save 200 to 600 calories a day doing this.

2. Don’t drink your calories.

A little coffee or tea is one thing. But soda, shakes, iced coffee drinks, juices and energy drinks are overflowing with calories, which you don’t want, right? Don’t waste precious caloric intake on liquids that don’t fill you up.

3. Absolutely no drive-through or delivery food.

McDonald’s likes to run those “Mommy and me” ads that show slender young Mommy eating salad while her ringlet-bedecked tutu-wearing darling is busy dipping apples into some sweet sap. Please. This stuff is generally more marketing than meaningful, so read the ingredients and avoid anything sweet or fried. Best to stick to fresher fare.

4. Move it!

You don’t have to become a gym rat. You don’t have to sign up for the local 10K. But you need to move. Simply put, any movement that is more than you currently do is going to be effective. If you don’t ever work out, walking around the neighborhood for 20 minutes a day, 5 days a week is going to

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Clickativity

Take that, quackery!

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The Fuming Fuji Says No to Uncrustables

The Fuming Fuji is outraged at the marketing of toxic food, especially when it’s aimed at the small fry. This week, the Fuming Fuji has decided to have a serious problem with Uncrustables.

But, Fuming Fuji, you ask, what’s wrong with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich already made and ready to go? And no crust? Kids will love it!

The Fuming Fuji says no!

The claim: Now you can buy pre-made frozen PB&J sandwiches with the crusts already cut off! Just think what you can do with those extra three seconds!

The catch: Now you can buy pre-made frozen PB&J sandwiches with this inside:
WHEAT BREAD: ENRICHED UNBLEACHED FLOUR (WHEAT FLOUR, MALTED BARLEY FLOUR, NIACIN, REDUCED IRON, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), WATER, UNBLEACHED WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, YEAST, PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED SOYBEAN OIL, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: WHEAT GLUTEN, SALT, CARAMEL COLOR, DOUGH CONDITIONERS (MAY CONTAIN ONE OR MORE OF: DIACETYL TARTARIC ACID ESTERS OF MONO AND DIGLYCERIDES [DATEM], MONO AND DIGLYCERIDES, SODIUM STEAROYL LACTYLATE, CALCIUM PEROXIDE, ASCORBIC ACID, AZODICARBONAMIDE, L-CYSTEINE), YEAST NUTRIENTS (MAY CONTAIN ONE OR MORE OF: MONOCALCIUM PHOSPHATE, CALCIUM SULFATE, AMMONIUM SULFATE), CALCIUM PROPIONATE (MAINTAIN FRESHNESS), ENZYMES (WITH WHEAT), GUAR GUM, XANTHAM GUM. PEANUT BUTTER: PEANUTS, DEXTROSE, SUGAR, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: PARTIALLY AND FULLY HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OILS (SOYBEAN AND/OR COTTONSEED AND/OR RAPESEED), SALT, MOLASSES, MONO AND DIGLYCERIDES (PALM AND/OR SOYBEAN OIL). HONEY SPREAD: CORN SYRUP, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, WATER, HONEY, PECTIN, NATURAL FLAVOR, CITRIC ACID, POTASSIUM SORBATE (PRESERVATIVE), CARAMEL COLOR, CALCIUM CHLORIDE.

The comeback:
Well, I can’t pronounce most of those ingredients, but isn’t a crust-less sandwich a great way to get kids to eat something besides candy?

The conclusion: The Fuming Fuji does not have time for such questions. The Fuming Fuji is drowning in a pile of leftover crusts. If you think hydrogenated oil (trans fat) and bleached flour (sugar) with a lot of strange chemicals is great for your child, the Fuji cannot be of help.

The catchphrase:
Uncrustables: We’ve removed the nutrition so you don’t have to!
Disclaimer: Mark Sisson and the Worker Bees do not necessarily endorse the views of the Fuming Fuji.

[tags]children’s health, uncrustables, PB&J, peanut butter and jelly[/tags]

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Get Your Buzz On

Worker Bees’ Daily Bites

1) Why aren’t there teenage carrots?

Oh yeah, because they’d be unwashed, spoiled rotten and absolutely refuse to participate in any recipe.

2) Um, gross.

Thanks again, FDA. You guys continue to inspire. Who needs strict slaughterhouse standards when you can just spray your meat clean?

3) Skinny Fat

It’s what we’ve been saying all along. Skinny can still be fat. This study reveals that being thin but having a high percentage of body fat causes inflammation and all the problems that go with it. It’s actually better to be a little bigger, but really fit, than it is to be stick-thin but as strong as a noodle. There’s an actual medical term for it: “normal-weight obese”. Check out the article for all the details, and check out tomorrow’s Tuesday 10 for ways to get super-fit in no time.

4) Med McNugget?

We’re bothered, disturbed, and just generally in a big hot fuss over the ethical and health implications of using chickens to manufacture drugs. Doesn’t anyone stop and ask: wait, are we supposed to be doing this? Why don’t we just prevent health problems before they start and let the chickens stick to their own egg-laying pursuits? When you’re living in a world where people are so unhealthy even the chickens have to get involved, it’s time to change. Besides, the whole “Which Came First?” chicken-or-the-egg riddle was so fun. Chicken-or-the-pill, on the other hand, is just stupid.

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I Can’t Eat Anything!

Junior Apple Mike F. writes:

“Mark, what can I eat? I hear dairy is bad, fat is bad, then fat is good, but some fat is bad, carbs are bad, but fiber is good. There is nothing left. I can’t even have milk in my tea now – not that I would be caught sipping tea. But if I wanted to is the point. What’s a guy supposed to eat?”

Good question, Mike. The answer: just about everything.

I am pretty disciplined (according to my kids, I’m a drill sergeant). I don’t really “do” carbs, I definitely avoid any junk or processed food, and I try to eat organic. But even being so careful about what goes on my plate, I’d say honestly I get a lot more flavor and variety than some people I know who insist on a steady diet of burgers, beers and pizzas. The truth is, “fun” foods like nachos, pizza and tacos all taste the same: the texture is usually a mix of creamy or crunchy, there’s a lot of salt, some meat-type seasoning, and sugar. Eat that stuff and you’re starving the next hour.
You can eat salad and be a man about it. Seriously. I’m fitter, have more muscle mass and I’m in better shape than I’ve ever been at 5’10”, 165 lbs. and 8% body fat. I do it with a heavy supply of vegetables, of all things. I never worry too much about fat because I eat a lot of “good” fats, which really aren’t too hard to identify. More on that in a moment. But honestly, I never am deprived, hungry or suffer from any cravings. Actually, I refuse to eat something that isn’t delicious, period. To me, the relentlessly boring, salty, familiar flavor of most processed foods is not delicious. The fact that they’re also totally unhealthy is almost a side issue.

This morning, for example, I had my cup of joe with a little organic H&H. I don’t always eat breakfast (there I go breaking all the holy grails of health). This morning I had some scrambled Omega-enhanced eggs, and sometimes I’ll have a piece of fruit or a protein smoothie . I confess I don’t eat a lot of fruit (my wife jokes that men like the idea of fruit but don’t always know what to do with it). I like to get my fiber from vegetables since they’re lower in sugar and have more nutrients than fruit.

For a snack I’ll grab a piece of fruit, cherry tomatoes or some almonds. I completely avoid processed snacks like chips and candy. Fresh stuff just tastes better – but it will take your body some time to readjust its tastes if you’ve been a junk food kind of guy.

For lunch (speaking of lunch…): I always eat a huge salad. I’ve done so for 20 years. But no regular salad – I add in seafood or turkey, mountains of colorful chopped up veggies, and drizzle some balsamic

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