It’s the absolute dead of winter, and many of you are subsisting in ruthlessly frigid weather. The local meteorologist cheerfully announces that, since December, you now have 19 more minutes of daylight! Yippee. It’s 4:30, and the sun hasn’t completely sunk below the icy horizon. That’s all the news from Lake Tundra!
As tempting as it is to hibernate in the comfort of our warm living room, the fact remains that, while we’re well within our rights to curse the cold, we need the sunlight.
Yes, in summer, it’s simple. Just get off your duff and walk outside. In January, well, it’s The Christmas Story scene when Ralphie’s mom bundles up his little brother in preparation for the walk to school: “I can’t put my arms down!”
Finally, the excuse you were looking for to hit the bottle: Researchers from Sirtris Pharmaceuticals this week announced that a derivative of an ingredient in red wine may help reverse the signs of aging!
The ingredient in question is resveratol, a naturally occurring substance in wine, that stimulates a gene known as SIRT1. In previous studies, the SIRT1 gene has been found to increase the lifespan of rodents, but this is the first study to test the theory in humans.
I hear conflicting advice on the percentage of protein in a healthy diet. How much protein should I be getting?
The subject of protein intake is, as you’ve noticed, a contentious issue. It’s gotten a lot of attention (and scrutiny) since the Atkins and derivative diet plans became all the rage several years ago. Let me first say that, while I can tell you my perspective on protein, it’s not a stand-in for your physician’s advice. Individual health history is crucial to determining appropriate protein intake, and your doctor will be able to look at the full picture with you.
That said, I think high protein diets get a bad rap for a number of reasons. Too many people approach a high protein diet as a free pass to eat whatever meats they crave, and that too often means fatty, cured, conventional meat. They also don’t balance their diet appropriately.
Though I don’t believe that the road to health is paved with incessant high endurance exercise, it doesn’t mean that I “can” cardio entirely either. Just as humans didn’t evolve to eat frosted wheat squares for breakfast, I don’t think three hours on the treadmill (or the hill over yonder) would’ve made much sense to your forefathers and mothers of a different era.
Instead, let’s talk “caveman cardio,” those short bursts of maximum output that caught the dinner or protected the tribe. This kind of cardio—practicing brief spurts of high intensity power and speed—both uses the body the way it was meant to be used and sustains the physical potential required for these activities.
Lack of sleep, stress, not washing your hands, going out the door with damp hair (according to my Mum at least). The common thread? Things that can make you sick.
Now add working out to that list.
Yep, according to researchers at Australia’s Griffith University, elite athletes may be more susceptible to harmful pathogens than their couch potato counterparts.
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