Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.

Archive for May, 2011

9 May

Dear Mark: CLA Supplements

cheesebutteroilToday’s question comes from Ola and regards CLA, or conjugated linoleic acid. What is CLA? CLA is the “good” trans-fat that occurs naturally in meat and dairy, especially from grass-fed animals. In the stomach of ruminants like cows, sheep, or goats, millions upon millions of bacteria help the animal digest its food. They also help convert dietary linoleic fatty acids into saturated fatty acids. Well, that conversion takes several steps, and one of the steps is the creation of CLA, some of which never gets fully saturated and instead shows up in the animal’s body and milk fat. 28 different CLA isomers, or structural arrangements of the molecules, appear in CLA-rich animal fat. It’s very complex and quite different from trans-fat created by partially hydrogenating vegetable oils. Those lab-created trans-fats have definite negative metabolic and health effects, while the panoply of various CLA isomers from grass-fed dairy and meat seem to be beneficial. With that said, let’s get to the question.

9 May

WOW: Asymmetry

pbf wow 2

Complete 5 cycles:

7 Single-Leg Crossbody Deadlifts (each leg)
20 Meter Single-Leg Hops (each leg)
50 Meter Single-Shoulder Weighted Carry (switch shoulders halfway through)
30-second Single-Arm/Leg Plank (each side)

8 May

Weekend Link Love

weekend link loveDr. Briffa presents the case for vitamin D as an athletic performance enhancer, calling it “solar power.” Clever.

Stick-wielding Swedish male backs down an angry moose, albeit a baby one. Man the hunter, indeed (although I’d like to see him up against a full-grown moose).

Statins certainly lower LDL, if you’re into that sorta thing, but they may also lower your ability to put on lean mass. A new study shows that middle-aged men who gained the most muscle mass also had the highest LDL. Interesting (also interesting that muscle pain is a common complaint of statin-takers…) correlation.

Paleo Baby gnaws bones, poops solid, sleeps deep, cries little, shows muscle, and makes parents of other babies sullen, jealous, and despondent. Read how the Hawaiian Libertarian made it happen.

7 May

Homemade Coconut Milk Kefir

coconutkefir1We love the tangy and fresh flavor of kefir, a fermented beverage often described as drinkable yogurt. However, those of you who aren’t as fond of kefir might say that describing it as “tangy” is a little too kind.  What, you wonder, is there possibly to like about what is essentially a glass of thick, sour milk?

Loads of healthy gut flora, for one. Probiotics have numerous health benefits and eating fermented foods like kefir is a great way to make sure you’re getting enough. But we’re not here to tell you that you should plug your nose and chug kefir just because it’s good for you. We’re here to tell you that after you try homemade coconut milk kefir, you’re going to chug it because it tastes really good. Unlike kefir made from cows’ milk, coconut milk kefir doesn’t have a strong fermented, sour flavor. It is pleasantly tangy, but the naturally sweet taste of coconut dominates. The texture is smooth and rich and slightly thinner than yogurt. Both the flavor and texture of homemade kefir is superior to any store-bought coconut milk kefir we’ve tried.

6 May

I Am Tired of This Hamster Wheel

real life stories stories 1 2It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another dose of Primal Blueprint inspiration. Today, Michelle Ford, a PrimalCon 2011 attendee, shares a story that many of you can probably relate to – one of sugar dependence and Chronic Cardio. Ultimately, Michelle was able to break out of this vicious cycle. Learn from her real life story, and share your words of encouragement and gratitude in the comment board. Grok on!

If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as you send them in. Thanks for reading!

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