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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A Monday Moment

Great health isn’t just about food or supplements, though everybody does tend to focus on those things. Great health is also about fitness, enjoyment of life, emotional satisfaction, and mental strength, too. Welcome to the Monday Moment: just a little gem from Mark that we’re passing on to you – because feeling good is healthy!

Monday Moment: One of Mark’s essential rules for life is forgiveness. Learn to forgive people – and not for them, either. It’s for you! That’s why forgiveness is so great: it frees up head space so you can feel good about yourself and your life. We don’t forgive others when they goof or hurt us so that they can go on living happily ever after – forgiveness is so you can live happily ever after. Don’t invest in thinking about how your boss, your neighbor or a pal has hurt you. It does take energy to learn a new habit (like letting go) but try it a few times and it will become old hat. It’s easier to feel good than it is to feel bad, so as the old Asian proverb goes, if you’re holding a hot coal, drop it!

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The Sherlock Award

My Inaugural Sherlock Award goes to Health Day News, as posted by the Poughkeepsie Journal. The Sherlock Award is given to the latest MOTO – Master of the Obvious. It’s for “breaking” health and fitness news that isn’t breaking anything except my patience. To be clear, the Sherlock Award isn’t about making fun of that news – the news is accurate. Rather, it’s about my puzzlement over reporting on things I thought were already part of the general knowledge bowl we call “Common Sense.”

This article reports that exercise can help treat depression, anxiety, insomnia, stress, Alzheimer’s, and a host of other mood imbalances, mental disorders and health problems.

It’s human nature to compare life now to life “in the good old days.” And in the good old days, it seems nobody had a shrink or took Prozac. This doesn’t mean people weren’t depressed or stressed out “back then”; nevertheless, if you believe the statistics (always a dicey proposition), a significant number of Americans have something really unpleasant going on upstairs, whether it’s trouble sleeping, dealing with stress, or feeling good about life.

Isn’t it obvious? Most of us sit in front of a computer all day. We go home and sit in front a television. It doesn’t take a genius to surmise that moving around might be something humans were meant to do. In fact, scientists know that exercise – even mild movement like walking or doing chores – releases dopamine, serotonin and all kinds of other wonderful enzymes, compounds and hormones into our bodies. Our brains are natural little medicine factories; many of the drugs created to treat issues like stress and depression or insomnia and anxiety mimic the very compounds our bodies are capable of making – when we move.

Read the article, savor their glorious triumph, and treat your body right today.

[tags] dopamine, serotonin, depression, anxiety, stress, insomnia, natural cures, health benefits of exercise, MOTO, Sherlock Award, brain, hormones [/tags]

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A Word on Cheese ‘Food’

Well, a few dozen words, which apparently still can’t compete with the number of ingredients required to make cheese “food”. When a food producer has to state the obvious, I get concerned. I start thinking about lobbies, factories, manufacturing, chemicals, and processes – things that sounded fun on the Jetsons but have disturbing consequences in reality.

Maybe I’m easily entertained, but I get a real kick (more pain than humor, actually) from “foods” I see in the grocery store. Some days, I can’t even make it through the center aisles – it’s just too much. But even the dairy case can be a minefield of scientific stupefaction for which no chemistry refresher course could possibly prepare me. Case in point: cheese food.

When did the food supply become about food products instead of food? When did it become acceptable to label something meant for human ingestion as a “cheese food”? What’s next: milk food, beef food, and perhaps food food?
I grew up in Maine: lots of trees, animals, mountains, farms. I grew up with the knowledge that cheese was something that came from milk after some fairly simple processing. Something about Miss Moppet and curds and whey. These days, cheese “food” comes from a factory and includes things like “anhydrous milkfat”. Google at your own risk. And schools feed it to our kids, meanwhile, and feel good because there’s calcium in it!

It’s a mass-produced, centralized, chemical-laden world of cheese food we live in, Apples. I encourage you to be vigilant about eating only fresh foods that don’t need descriptions like “process” or “product” or, as if we should eat something that comes with a reminder, “food”.

Here’s some clickativity from a less-perplexed soul who took the time to explain exactly what goes into cheese “food”. Read at your discretion.

[tags] lobbies, factories, manufacturing, chemicals, processed food, mass production, cheese food, anhydrous milkfat, strange food ingredients, dairy [/tags]

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Your Weekly Health Challenge

Here’s Mark’s weekly health challenge, Apples:

This week, let’s go green. Eat something green – whether leafy or crunchy – at every meal, including breakfast. You’ll feel leaner by the end of the week (but not meaner).

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Be a Better Butternut

SMART FUEL

Why eat “I’ll have diabetes with that” spuds when you can eat mellow, healthy butternut squash?

This delicately-flavored squash typically comes cubed in the produce section. It’s also a popular soup puree. And it sure beats other starchy vegetables in the nutrition department. One serving gives you half your daily vitamin C requirement and 450% of your vitamin A requirement! At 80 calories per cup (compared to 100 for a small potato), with little impact on your blood sugar, butternuts are just better! You can mash, bake, puree, slice, and dice to your heart’s content.

[tags] butternut squash, low-carb pasta, glycemic index [/tags]


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The Sisson Spoof

Start ’em young…

[tags] spoof, Lunchables, Oscar Mayer, obesity epidemic, lunch, snack, children’s health, high sodium foods [/tags]

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