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

Mark's Daily Apple

17 Feb

Pharma Confidential

If you have ever experienced difficulty in finding the motivation needed to complete the most common daily tasks you may be part of the estimated 20% of the population that is burdened by a newly discovered debilitating disorder – Motivation Deficiency Disorder, or MDD. Luckily, there is a simple answer: Strivor.

No. We aren’t serious. But you can easily imagine hearing this sort of thing in the next Big Pharma television ad campaign.

This is at the heart of this parody video that provides biting commentary on the tactics used by Big Pharma and the state of the healthcare industry. It is put together by Consumer International, which, as they say, is “the world federation of consumer groups that, working together with its members, serves as the only independent and authoritative global voice for consumers.”

Keep reading…

16 Feb

Magnificent Muscle

Strong CatA research study out this week indicates type II muscle mass associated with strength training not only helps reduce body fat but alters overall metabolism.

Researchers from the Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) have demonstrated that in mice, the use of barbells may be as important to losing weight and improving health as the use of running shoes. The discovery builds upon the fact that skeletal muscle consists of two types of fibers. Endurance training such as running increases the amount of type I muscle fibers, while resistance training such as weightlifting increases type II muscle fibers. Using a mouse genetic model, BUSM researchers demonstrated that an increase in type II muscle mass can reduce body fat which in turn reduces overall body mass and improves metabolic parameters such as insulin resistance. These studies indicate that weight bearing exercise, in addition to endurance training, may benefit overweight people.

via Science Daily

Keep reading…

15 Feb

GMO Foods: Super Solution or Franken Future?

Close your eyes and think about genetically modified crops. Now what do you see? Green fields of lush, pest-resistant, hardy crops? A ghoulish cast hovering above insidious kodachrome orbs they call GM tomatoes? Hordes of protestors in t-shirts and Converse sneakers? Hungry children being fed? A Pandora’s Box?

Applaud or curse, the U.S. allows the planting of GM crops, while many countries do not. It also doesn’t mandate labeling of genetically modified food, as do Europe and many other countries. These circumstances have, experts agree, allowed food made with genetically engineered ingredients to be included in approximately 70% of food in typical grocery stores.

Keep reading…

15 Feb

Law Would Prohibit Restaurants from Serving Obese Patrons

Last week, the Mississippi legislature introduced a controversial bill that would have prohibited eateries from serving food to “any person who is obese based on criteria prescribed by the state health department.”

Under the bill, which was struck down before even making it to the House, the responsibility of denying larger customers would have fallen squarely on the shoulders of restaurant wait staff, with the state health department charged with monitoring compliance and revoking permits to those eateries that failed to comply.

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14 Feb

Mature Muscle?

A few weeks ago we tackled the importance of lean muscle mass in aging and its typical correlation with organ reserve. Conventional wisdom tells us that muscle is easiest to develop when you are young, that we tend to lose muscle as we age, and that it becomes more difficult to put on muscle as we grow older. We thought we’d investigate and give you a clearer picture of what the research has to say.

Just to review, we’re talking skeletal muscle here, which includes two types of fibers. Type I fibers are associated with endurance training, while type II fibers are associated with weight training. It’s true that adults do tend to lose muscle mass during typical aging (typical being the operative word here), and it’s the type II fibers that are depleted. Type I fibers are generally preserved. But the type II fibers, research is finding, play a crucial role in regulating the body’s metabolism. These guys help direct the activities of tissues in other systems of the body. Given their influential roles, maintaining type II fibers (i.e. muscle mass) as we age can reduce the risk for diabetes and obesity.

Keep reading…

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