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: May 2012

Why We Don’t Sprint Anymore (plus a Primal Health Challenge)

Last week, I covered a glaring deficit in the lives of most modern people: the lack of walking. And it’s not just the “normal” people who aren’t walking enough; two thirds of those readers who took the poll get fewer than five hours of slow easy movement each week. Since everyone walks at least a few hundred steps a day, people are generally aware – among even the general population – that people just don’t walk anymore. They might not think that’s a true problem, but they’re definitely aware of it. Today, I want to discuss another glaring (in my eyes) deficit in our modern lives: the lack of sprinting.

At first glance, this might seem ludicrous. Sprinting? Sure, it’s a cool thing to do, and it’s good for us, but do you really expect everyone to line up at a track and sprint all out for 100 meters? Besides, is sprinting really essential, the way walking is essential? Because let’s face it: running at top speed for 10 to 15 seconds is an unrealistic expectation for most people, especially older folks. Many people just aren’t physically able to do it.

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Dear Mark: Night Eating Syndrome

There’s nothing quite so powerful as the urge to eat. Being living organisms that require sustenance and nutrition, we find it difficult to resist. It’s not like smoking, or sex, or drugs, which you can technically avoid and still live, because they aren’t really required for an individual’s survival. No, food is an absolute necessity. So what happens when that basic human requirement for life – the need to eat something – conflicts with another important factor in health – the need to sleep? Today’s edition of Dear Mark deals with exactly that: night-eating syndrome, a real and extremely frustrating eating disorder in which the afflicted awaken during the night, compelled to eat everything and anything. As you’ll see from the following question, when you wake up at 3 AM with a raw, preternatural hunger gnawing at your very core, you’re probably not going to throw together a nice spinach, kale, and watercress salad in lemon vinaigrette and poach a few pastured eggs. You’re going to grab what’s available and what’s easy and what satisfies that carnal urge:

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Weekend Link Love – Edition 188

How one awesome kid gets to school every morning. I’d say that beats the pants off taking the bus, wouldn’t you?

From Dr. Briffa, the dark side of sunscreens: how sunblock doesn’t seem to do much against melanoma (and it may even make it worse).

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Eating Paleo, a great introduction to the world of ancestral eating and health for the uninitiated, was recently released. Go check it out.

Breastfeeding babes begets beneficial gene expression in their immune system and helps bolster their intestinal stability. In other words, breast is by far best.

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Tender Lemon-Parsley Brisket

There’s no shortage of braised brisket recipes out there, each claiming to be the tastiest way to coax a tough piece of meat into a tender, melt-in-your-mouth meal. Most of these recipes are very good, but they also tend to be very similar. The meat cooks in some blend of wine/tomatoes/broth (and often, a sweet sauce of some sort from a jar) and then emerges hours later smothered in a thick, rich coating.

This recipe for Lemon-Parsley Brisket gives brisket a makeover, changing the flavor entirely. Lemon is so often used with fish and poultry that it might seem like an odd choice for a big chunk of red meat. It turns out to be the perfect accent though, adding a light, zesty flavor to every bite. Combine the lemon – both its juice and zest – with a generous amount of garlic and loads of fresh, bright green parsley and you’ll experience brisket in an entirely new way. Sure, it’s still a hearty roast with layers of crispy, fatty, tender meat, but the overall flavor is light and fresh.

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A Primal Comeback

It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. 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 they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

For most of my adult life I’ve been called many things, but “skinny” has taken some getting use to.

For years I repeatedly followed the conventional ritual of low-fat, low-calorie dieting paired with exercise to lose weight. With each attempt I would lose weight, sometimes as much as a few dozen pounds at a time. However, constant hunger eventually won out over my best efforts to eat less while exercising more (as prescribed by the “calories in, calories out” mindset). I would regain the lost weight and then some. When New Year’s came along, I would resolve myself to try harder than the previous attempt. The sad part is that each time I expected different results doing roughly the same thing. Unfortunately, after losing and regaining the weight three times, I quit caring about my own health, even despite my wife’s concerns.

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Is It Primal? – Coconut Water, Chocolate Milk, Glycomaize and Other Foods Scrutinized

Perhaps the most common question I get from readers is some variation on the classic “Is X Primal?”  Probably a half dozen times a day, “Is this Primal?” or “Is that Primal?” pop up in my inbox, often attached to some ridiculous food or product. My personal favorite was “Is whole wheat bread Primal?” (it’s not), closely followed by “What’s more Primal, red or black licorice?” But that’s not to suggest that all I get is nonsense. Some – most, even – are actually quite reasonable queries about foods that either seem to reside in Primal limbo, get talked up by people who you’d think would “know better,” or just taste really good and have people hoping that somehow, someway they’re compatible with Primal living.

Today, I’ll be scrutinizing ten commonly asked-about foods. Let’s go:

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