There are essential fatty acids. There are essential amino acids. There are not essential sugars. We’ve received so many questions about glyconutrients, I feel it’s necessary to respond here at the blog.
For the record, “glyconutrients” are worse than bogus – they are a scam. This term was invented by a multi-level marketing company called Mannatech. (While MLM’s aren’t all bad, they can certainly be a red flag.) In this case, the entire concept of supplementing with “glyconutrients” – minute amounts of plain old simple sugars – is not only unscientific; it’s just silly. There is simply no compelling evidence to support the glyconutrient claim that the human body is somehow deficient in certain forms of sugar due to our modern lifestyle. Among the many dubious and weasel-worthy “explanations”, the central claim is that scientific discoveries in recent decades have shown that there are 8 types of sugar and that your cells – gasp – use these sugars. I’ve had burps that are more mind-blowing than this “science”.
If you are a regular reader of Mark’s Daily Apple you are probably well aware of those funny looking Vibram FiveFingers by now. They’ve been mentioned in our barefoot running post, featured in a Top 10 Ultimate Fitness Gadgets post and showcased in Mark’s sprinting video. What can we say? We’re huge fans! The only thing FiveFingers hasn’t got is its own post. It is high time this performance footwear we love oh so much got the attention it well deserves, so here goes nothing.
There’s always some new product anxious to help you part with your hard-earned cash. Some products are healthy or helpful, but some are downright dishonest scams. These three have become popular of late. Don’t fall for the hype!
Nonsensical and useless, the popularity of oil pulling persists. Through very particular “sieving” of an oil mixture in the mouth (think mouth rinse in slow motion), the oil supposedly draws toxins from the blood. If it were possible for oil to “pull” toxins out of the veins in the tongue, it would also be possible for oil to enter the bloodstream through your tongue. A molecule is a molecule. Toxins can’t “leak” out of your veins – if they could, you wouldn’t need to “pull” them out. Besides, even if toxins could “leak” from your veins, it would take far more than 15 or 20 minutes of “pulling” to cleanse your entire blood supply. Furthermore, fat-soluble toxins (the kind that would bind to oil) are not in the bloodstream. They are in your…fat cells! And on and on it goes. Read this terrific expose if you still think oil pulling is effective – it’s guaranteed to change your mind.
If you’ve read Mark’s Deconstructing Healthcare in America: A Modest Proposal or one of our other healthcare rants you know Mark’s Daily Apple has a lot to say about America’s ailing and defunct healthcare system. Huge improvements are needed, so we are thrilled to see anything that nominally resembles a step in the right direction.
Last week Microsoft launched the beta version of their new health records portal, HealthVault. Could HealthVault be the long awaited 21st century introduction to electronic health records that the medical establishment has been in dire need of for years? It is too early to tell, but it does look intriguing.
I’ve gotten so many emails from you all asking about the possible superior health benefits of krill oil over fish oil, we should discuss it here at the blog. Nutrition fads come and go and some of the claims are certainly amusing. If it’s not pomegranate it’s goji berries or acai. If it’s not red wine it’s kombucha. We’ve covered many of these in previous blog posts (see the links below). Krill oil is claimed by some to be superior to fish oil. No doubt, I think we all ought to be getting more Omega-3′s into our bodies. But should you go for the krill?
Krill are shrimp-like crustaceans and they are the primary food source of baleen whales (a single whale gleans 4 tons of these tiny shrimp every day). Krill feed on plankton and as such are a critical part of the increasingly fragile Antarctic ecosystem. In general, of course, all our oceans are a mess – whether from over-fishing or pollution or a combination thereof. There’s no question that Omega-3 fatty acids from marine sources are excellent for human health; the trouble is finding the best, safest, purest, and most environmentally responsible source.
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