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

Weekend Link Love – Edition 115

As NPR reports, your lifestyle behaviors may not only affect your gene expression. They may alter your children’s, too.

Author Leo Babauta of Zen Habits just launched his new book, Focus. For those looking to simplify the chaos in their lives, Leo has aptly dubbed his new book a “simplicity manifesto.” You can get it free as a download, or you can buy an upgraded version including some goodies like how-to videos (love the title “How to Single Task”) and interviews with the likes of Seth Godin.

I occasionally feature some parkour action here. This week you get dog parkour.

My good buddy and former professional triathlete Brad Kearns was recently interviewed on Matt Metzgar’s site. It’s a great read for folks who are Primal but still like to run.

For folks who enjoyed Wednesday’s post on doctor payouts from pharmaceutical companies, here’s an excellent interview with Ray Moynihan on a different marketing tactic Big Pharma uses: Promoting the disorder to promote the treatment.

And finally, zonk yourself out, man.

Recipe Corner

Time Capsule

One year ago (October 17 – 23)

Comment of the Week

An email from a reader…


Curious observation.  I keep a pretty close watch on my finances.  I thought about looking at the difference between my dining expenses and grocery expenses.  I started getting serious about my health/workouts in 10/09, and I started the blueprint around Feb 10.  Outside of a few spikes, it’s a pretty clear divergence. . .


You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. Oh my gosh, those dark chocolate almond bites look like heaven! I’m definitely going to have to try making those…

    Tara wrote on October 24th, 2010
  2. With a summation line I can only eyeball it, but it looks like the total of Ian’s groceries + dining is only slightly higher on paleo.

    Chase Saunders wrote on October 24th, 2010
  3. Here in NH, we’ve got a place called the Healthy Buffalo that specializes in game meat — a few weeks back, we had wild boar, venison, and bison chili.

    No beans, but garden-grown peppers and tomatoes.


    Andy wrote on October 24th, 2010
  4. What about becoming obese, and then cleaning up your lifestyle and losing the weight, and THEN having kids?

    Are you still passing on a higher risk of obesity to your kids?

    chipin wrote on October 24th, 2010
    • I’d bet not. Or less, anyway. Also of course you’d then be raising them with good habits, which can make at least as much of a difference as your genes.

      Jenny wrote on October 24th, 2010
  5. Thank you, Mark, for the recent posts on Big Pharma. Most people don’t realize just how deep their influence reaches, including most physicians.

    Sean wrote on October 24th, 2010
  6. Hello all and Salaam Alaykam, I am wondering, what is a good way of telling which fruits are the least engineered. There is no doubt that some apples(for example) are sweeter than others, but how do I know which ones are the most natural? Are there certain types to look for or to avoid?

    Ben in Abu Dhabi wrote on October 24th, 2010
    • In United States grocery stores, you can tell which which are which by the plu code (the number on the sticker they put on fruits and veggies). Conventionally grown is a four digit number & starts with a 4 (ex: #4126), organic is a five digit number & starts with a 9 (ex: #94126). It used to be that GMO was a five digit code that started with 8 (#84126) but since the Biotech companies have realized we don’t want to be their guinea pigs, they now for the most part use the same as for conventional.

      The only way to ensure you are getting GMO-free produce is to buy organic.

      Source: Organic Food Coupons Website
      “How to read produce stickers on organic and conventional produce.”

      chipin wrote on October 24th, 2010
  7. Where is the “Training for Duathletes” Mark wrote that Kearns says is available on this site?

    AlyieCat wrote on October 24th, 2010
  8. Hi Mark,

    After reading _Good Calories, Bad Calories_ by Gary Taubes, I picked up your book to get more concrete dietary and exercise advise.

    So first, thank you for writing this book. The scope of this book is exactly what I wanted.

    Once thing I noticed is that on page 10 you cited Deepak Chopra who I know was criticized by PZ Myers, a biology professor at the University of Minnesota.

    So I want to hear your thoughts on his credibility when he talks about topics related to biology or genetics.

    Also, on one of his podcasts by Gary Taubes, he clearly mentioned that he doesn’t “buy the trans fat story” and that the way the research that was used to demonstrate that trans fat is bad for health is flawed.

    I want to hear your opinion about this too. You mentioned his book in your Acknowledgements so getting conflicting messages may confuse the readers of your book.

    Thank you!

    stan wrote on October 24th, 2010
    • PZ Myers is a hack. But then again, so is Chopra.

      zoltan wrote on October 26th, 2010
  9. WHAT A DOG!!!!

    Samantha Moore wrote on October 24th, 2010
  10. Barkour.

    Karin wrote on October 24th, 2010
  11. Speaking of pharma money, you’ve got to see the documentary, “Burzynski”. Search the name and buy the movie. You’ll be shocked.

    Dave, RN wrote on October 24th, 2010
  12. Who doesn’t know about “good genes” or “bad genes”?
    My oldest daughter got her giant blockhead from Dad along with his family history of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and the like. My youngest got my smaller stature and the ability for a small human to cause a mess of trouble (jk;) But seriously…
    My family, although happy, fit (relatively)and active, is full of severe allergies. My Dad, little brother, and (male) cousin have the nut allergy, enough that a taste is life-threatening. I was covered in severe eczema most of my young life along with hay fever/seasonal allergies, and developed a strange fish allergy in my 20’s.
    Well, I managed to ditch the eczema/allergies(still working on fish, I CAN eat shellfish!) by eating Primal/Paleo.
    I was determined to break the cycle and nursed my children. NO ALLERGIES (that we are aware of)
    But my youngest(almost 7) has skin like sandpaper,(although never inflamed or red) and a metabolism like a hummingbird….trying to get more good fat in that kid.
    My oldest (8) has started to get chunky, and has a body type like her Dad..and is generally more laid back and prone to forgetting to go out and play.
    My point is ( sorry for rambling again) that although they carry the same genes, and I feel as though I did the right things to get them off the best start, they are certainly wired differently already, from before birth. Vastly different birth weights and builds. Is one destined to fight fat and diabetes while one fights allergens?
    I certainly mashed enough organic avacados and bananas for many years… How much genetic garbage can we undo? And how much of the survivor genes that got us this far pass on in light of all the damage?
    Just thinking out loud…if we can undo some of our genetic damage, its too late to pass to our already born children, right? So we can only hope that they also find a way (example) to maximize the integrity of thier OWN genes…Oh boy, this is a BIG job!

    Julie Aguiar wrote on October 24th, 2010
  13. Nice links today!

    Ahmed Serag wrote on October 25th, 2010
  14. Love the dog parkour! The tree climbing is like MovNat for canines!

    Weston wrote on October 25th, 2010
  15. I thought organic was just no chemicals used, such as pesticides. Does it also mean that it is non-engineered?
    Thanks for the info.

    Ben in Abu Dhabi wrote on October 25th, 2010
  16. That dog is the most awesome dog I have ever seen… I wish I could do all that!

    Primal Toad wrote on October 25th, 2010
  17. In the NPR article it is amusing how conventional wisdom rears its head in so casual a way “and put half of them on a high-fat diet. Predictably, those rats got fat and suffered symptoms of diabetes.”

    My (limited) understanding of epigenetics is that what you are passing on is the methylation patterns of the genes – ie whether they are turned “on” or not so if you change your lifestyle then you can change that pattern and thus is you “clean up your act” you pass on that cleaned up act. Its obviously more complex than that but that would be a hypothesis you could at least work with.

    John M wrote on October 25th, 2010

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