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

Mark's Daily Apple

24 Sep

Why Exercise Feels Like a Drag (and What to Do About It)

purposeSometimes while working out at home I catch Buddha (my lab) just kind of watching me doing squats or pushups or pullups or burpees with this look on his face that says, “You feed me, walk me, scratch me, and water me and I love you for it, but what in Dog’s name are you doing?” He probably thinks I’m insane. You can’t really blame the guy. I mean, the stuff we do for exercise is pretty silly:

You’re walking on a treadmill, literally going nowhere for miles at a time.

You’re pedaling like a madman, but instead of seeing the landscape unfold in front of you, you’re watching MSNBC with closed captioning on.

You’re picking up a metal bar with weights on either end and putting it back down over and over again.

Hanging from an overhead bar, you pull yourself up toward it until your chest touches, then go back down and repeat it several dozen times.

Is it any wonder that many people find modern exercise to be meaningless?

Keep reading…

23 Sep

Artificial Sweeteners May Leave You Absolutely Gutted

artificialsweeteners2Several years ago, I covered the popular artificial sweeteners sucralose, acesulfame-k, aspartame, and saccharin, finding mixed results and little to confirm the widely-held view that they provoke an insulin response. I also wrote about diet soda in general, coming out generally against them while acknowledging the lack of hard evidence either way. But artificial sweeteners may be interfering with our metabolic response to food by an entirely different avenue: the gut biome. According to a new study (PDF) that has nothing at all to do with the cephalic-phase insulin response, artificial sweeteners induce glucose intolerance by altering the composition of our gut microbiota.

There were a few different stages to the study:

Keep reading…

22 Sep

Dear Mark: High Uric Acid and Gout; From Vegetarian to Primal Without a Gallbladder

iStock 000024843539SmallFor today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m covering two questions. First, what’s the deal with really, really high uric acid levels? Assuming a person is fit with good body composition, feels good, and has no complaints, are they still worrisome? Can they still lead to gout? Maybe. Read on. And then I cover a question on the best way to transition from vegetarian to Primal. If that seems fairly standard, there’s a little wrinkle: the potential convert has no gallbladder.

Let’s go:

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21 Sep

Weekend Link Love – Edition 314

weekend link love2For everyone that’s been inquiring, this year’s annual 21-Day Challenge is postponed to January 1. Check back in 2015 to take part in the next challenge. I’ve got some fun stuff planned.

Check out the trailer for a great new movie – Carb-Loaded: A Culture Dying to Eat. It comes out October 1 and features a who’s who of obesity and nutrition experts.

Pure Food. Pure Training. is a colorful interactive iBook with delicious recipes, videos, functional fitness workouts and tips on how to integrate a Primal lifestyle into your daily life. The author, Romy Dollé, joined us at PrimalCon Tulum and lives with her family in Zurich, Switzerland. I highly recommend checking it out.

Keep reading…

20 Sep

Primal Celery Root Lasagna

Lasagna2If lasagna is comfort food that you just can’t quit thinking about, then pull out that lasagna pan because this recipe is going to make you really happy. Even the most carb-addicted, pasta-loving person you know will be hard pressed to admit that this Primal lasagna isn’t delicious. This lasagna is the real deal – minus the noodles, of course.

In place of noodles are thin sheets of celery root, a vegetable with a mild flavor and tender texture that does a fine job of impersonating a lasagna noodle. Extra scraps of celery root are pureed with butter to give the lasagna a creamy middle, no ricotta or béchamel sauce needed. This recipe isn’t completely dairy-free though, because if you’ve been really craving lasagna, then a cheese-free version just isn’t going to cut it. However, if you don’t do dairy no matter what, then you can use this recipe as inspiration to make a cheese-free casserole of meat and veggies layered with celery root (and let us know how it turns out).

Keep reading…

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