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

Weekend Link Love

weekend link loveI’ve just launched a new Facebook page for Primal Blueprint Publishing, where you can find photos, videos, book reviews, and recipes from your favorite Primal books. Stay tuned for constant updates to the page to keep you guys up to speed with the latest news from our Primal authors – what books we’re getting ready to release, when we’re releasing them, and fun, random info about our authors. Make sure to “Like” it, too! Thanks!

Research of the Week

We’ve all heard of the hygiene hypothesis, which posits that excessive sterility is responsible for the increase in allergies and autoimmune diseases. New research suggests that it may extend to Alzheimer’s disease, too.

Strength training has been dubbed safe for kids and teens. Good to have it confirmed.

Interesting Blog Posts

How to check your leg muscle function – and your general preparedness for life – with a simple physical test.

Okay, you’ve got a treadmill desk, and that’s great and all, but can you use it to scroll through a web page or control your Internet speed? (Side note: Check back next Wednesday when I’ll be publishing a video on the standup workstations at both my home and office.)

Media, Schmedia

This is a great story of how the son of an American anthropologist and Yanomami tribeswoman returned to the Amazon in search of his mother, twenty years after she got sick of America and hightailed it back to the jungle.

C-sections are big moneymakers. Is that why they’re on the rise?

Everything Else

Looks like Vibram Fivefingers aren’t so new after all.

Here’s what happens when you stop going outside. It ain’t pretty. Well, the video is actually quite pretty, but the ramifications of avoiding the outdoors are not.

Boy, inadequate sleep really, really messes with the hormones responsible for keeping you lean and healthy.

Recipe Corner

  • Good dense winter squash is finally beginning to appear in markets around here, so it’s the perfect time to make spicy cocoa-dusted kabocha squash.
  • Most lamb tagines I’ve had were made with apricots or raisins. Those were good, but I’m really interested in making this one using dates.

Time Capsule

One year ago (Sept 8 – Sept 14)

Comment of the Week

Cynics/skeptics bring the same utility to any discussion about health as a eunuch would bring to an orgy.

- Illustratively (and well!) said, Laurie.

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. Not sure I agree with the quote above. Skepticism often provokes a search for truth and hopefully with that, the ability to see things from a neutral (emotionless) perceptive. A healthy dose of skepticism is good every now and then; one must not live in that realm though.

    ATM wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • *edit: persPective

      ATM wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • I agree with you. Out of all the quotes from last week, it’s not the one I would have highlighted. The quotes was funny and relevant in context. Out of it — not so much The whole site rests on healthy skepticism of conventional wisdom. Seems odd to call out skeptics.

      Amy wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • Agree 100%! Skepticism is the engine of scientific inquiry and is neither “wrong” nor “right” in and of itself. Dogma and belief is all you have in the absence of skeptical inquiry. If this is what’s being selected as a comment of the week, I’m concerned about where this collective primal mind is right now. Sheesh. :(

      Tim wrote on September 8th, 2013
      • Sheesh indeed. I’m the biggest skeptic there is. I just thought it was a funny quote! Not a quote that represents the zeitgeist of the paleosphere…

        Mark Sisson wrote on September 8th, 2013
        • That quote was funny *in context*. It’s very much a duck out of water all by it’s lonesome.

          Amy wrote on September 9th, 2013
  2. A eunuch at an orgy would make an ideal camera man…

    Paleon Bon Rurgundy wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • As I recall, that was very close to their original job. ;)

      Amy wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • Hey man. You ever watch Parks and Rec?
      Ron Swanson seems like a character you might be into.

      Connor

      Connor Bryant wrote on September 9th, 2013
  3. Of course I immediately had to see if I could step up onto a dining room chair :). Yep. I feel successful for the day now.

    I had seen that story about David Good and his mom. I felt horrible because his mom left (since I AM a mom). But it changed the way I lived this week. We’re definitely a family that spends time in separate rooms on separate screens a lot of the time. I think if I had to spend that much time with my “tribe” I would feel stifled until I got used to that different way of living. But living isolated with “friends” on the computer, really? Why are so many of us living this way?

    My new goal is for my family to be in the same room more, and have real friends over more.

    Debbie wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • I don’t have any chairs anymore, thanks to the paleo lifestyle :p but I managed both the edge of the tub (30 cm) and the toilet seat (42 cm), both legs, with a bit of practice for the coordination aspect. It’s hard not pushing up with the other foot. Unfortunately, I’m still not that fit by my standards.

      Anemone wrote on September 8th, 2013
      • Hahaha! I’m glad you haven’t gone TOO primal and gotten rid of your tub!

        Debbie wrote on September 8th, 2013
  4. The research of the week piece definitely sounds interesting- I’ll be looking more into that! Great post, can’t wait to take a look at the other things on your site.

    Amanda Jones wrote on September 8th, 2013
  5. I’m looking forward to Denise Minger’s Death by Food Pyramid book!

    Jim Rendek wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • Me too! I feel like I’ve been waiting forever for Denise!

      Tangytam wrote on September 8th, 2013
  6. Honoured to have my lamb tagine make the list – thanks Mark! Happy Sunday (and happy eating) to all :)

    Cat wrote on September 8th, 2013
  7. The c-sec. rate has been on my mind, since I had a baby two weeks ago. I think it’s more complicated than just the extra money. Obviously, a doctor that does a c-sec. does more work than a doctor who just catches after a vaginal delivery. Quite often, I think it’s the doctors’ or hospitals’ way of covering their collective patooties. Better to do a c-sec. than risk waiting, having a bad outcome, and being sued. I the case of our local hospital, it’s too small and isolated to handle certain emergencies, and too far away to safely transfer an emergency to the nearest large hospital, so if a birth goes into a high-risk category, they do a c-sec. They are very willing to work with a low risk mother for the type of labor she wants, especially if she has done the research or has the experience to back it up. If things seem to be going badly, though, it’s into the operating room.

    Beccolina wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • Becca -

      If you read the comments of the article, the issue of lawsuit comes up as an alternative to the money. I think it’s safe to say that some Docs going into the profession for the money, but hopefully it’s not their mind in the moment. The fear of lawsuit, however is now omnipresent. (And not just for the money – I suspect it’s a huge stress on the MDs)

      At any rate, the bar has been set by everyone at perfection for every birth. (Sadly, I think MDs have bought into this as well. Somehow they must save every infant/prevent every birth issue even though it’s simply not possible.) Thus apparently, “safe” major abdominal surgery is now the first resort to as a “preventive” measure.

      I’ve had 3 home births, uncomplicated but slow, and attended by nurse-midwives. I’m convinced that I would have been induced and/or had staff at least be freaked out at the length of the labor.

      But in various online discussions, some people didn’t think I was allowed to weigh the dangers of inventions and/or possible unnecessary C-sections against possible hemorrhage (remote) or issues with the baby (also remote in low risk pregnancies).

      The only thing that matter to them was PUTTING THE BABY IN DANGER, you see. The possibility that sometimes babies just don’t make it, no matter where they are born, just wasn’t there. Apparently hospital staff never makes mistakes.

      Or that the far more personal and attentive service at home (seriously, I had 4 midwives at my last home birth) prevented the scenarios that require the interventions in the first place. Just not on the radar screen.

      And it’s that sort of black and white thinking that traps women (and docs and midwives) into a system where we’re losing skills. There are very few people who will even attempt breech vaginal births any more, even though it was common place just 2 generations ago.

      Our alternative: all the risks of major abdominal surgery (including extended recovery time with a newborn infant), future carry/labor risks, and a lovely scar for life for otherwise healthy women. In this area of medicine, we’re taking a huge step backward. Nothing about the steep increase in C-sections since the 70′s has improved outcomes, at least in the stats I’ve seen. :(

      Amy wrote on September 8th, 2013
      • PS – If you’ve just read this and are just itching to write out how your wife, friend, etc had a baby and thank goodness surgery was right down the hall, please detail the situation. What lead up to it, what the staff did, the actual immediate issue that sent everyone to surgery etc.

        I’m tired of “generic” fear — that is I’m going to scare you because a stranger had an unnamed issue in an unnamed place, so you should go to the hospital, too as soon as you get pregnant. *At least* give me the specifics if you’re going to try to scare me out of my wits.

        *sigh* People tend to think that “issues in childbirth” is a descriptive, when it’s really about as informative as “he died because his heart stopped”. Everyone dies because their heart stops. If I’m going to access risk, it needs to be more specific then naming a process that by definition, has to mostly work.

        Okay, rant off. :)

        Amy wrote on September 8th, 2013
        • I had both my kids at home with a midwife! My son had shoulder dystorcia and if I had been in a hospital they would have put me on my back and cut an episiotomy – not because it would help the baby come out but because it would be easier for the doctor to see! But thanks to my midwife she got mr in a squat, put her hands up and got my son out! I trusted my midwife because she knew normal birth (most hospital births are NOT normal births).
          And yes, I did tons of research before deciding on a home birth – I am a lawyer after all…

          Diane wrote on September 8th, 2013
        • Diane -

          Hi! Nice to meet you!! :) I can’t tell you how much reading I did before deciding to have my first at home.

          The stereotype for home birth is that we’re all “hippies” (or deeply religious) and acting totally on emotion. It doesn’t seem to occur to some people that a woman choosing a home birth might have done a ton of research and decided it was the least risky course/best choice for their low risk pregnancy.

          It’s really too bad that home birth or even births at stand alone birth centers get so little consideration. I understand if a woman wants serious pain meds — it can only be safely done at a hospital. But if a woman doesn’t want that, going to a hospital before a medical emergency presents itself becomes “greyer’ proposition, at least to me.

          Amy wrote on September 8th, 2013
        • I’ve been on both ends. Baby 1 had to be induced early due to pre-eclampsia. I have some thoughts on how a better lifestyle on my part might have prevented that, but I can’t go inform my past self. Afterward, I hemorrhaged from an unrelated and unforeseen problem. I almost didn’t make it to the next floor down for emergency surgery. I needed to be in a hospital.
          My other three births were as easy and uncomplicated as a birth could be, I would have liked to have them at home, but there is no midwife close enough to make it. My labors come fast, and go quickly. Expectant parents need to do their research and inform themselves as much as possible and make their own decisions.

          Beccolina wrote on September 14th, 2013
  8. Even though it might be safe for kids to do strength training, doesn’t mean you should send them to the gym to lift weights.

    Exercise is not only a stress, it’s also damaging your muscles on purpose so you’ll produce adaptation. That stress and damage is fine for someone who is mostly grown, but take a young kid, yet to grow, and that increase in muscle mass from exercise will probably come at the expense of growth.

    Not saying they should be sedentary. They should work with their body weight and enjoy recreational activities. I just wouldn’t suggest hitting the gym hard too early.

    MC wrote on September 8th, 2013
  9. Seems like I hear less and less about the Vibram 5 fingers. Anyone wear them for 2 plus years start to experience any problems?

    Donnie Law wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • Not at all. Getting comfyer all the time.

      Nocona wrote on September 8th, 2013
  10. lol @ the Egyptian One-Toe “Shoe”.

    Julian wrote on September 8th, 2013
  11. On the subject of caesarians, they are on the rise all around the world. Here in NZ childbirth is free whether you have a normal birth or high intervention so the money factor doesn’t come into it. My obstetrician told me his opinion of why there are more caesarians now: baby size is much bigger whereas women’s pelvic size hasn’t grown at all. You only have to look at the birth notices in the papers, it is common to see 8 or 9 or 10 pound babies. Forty years ago they would have been considered huge, a normal baby then was 6 or 7 pounds. So it is simple physics; big baby plus small pelvis equals big problem!

    Sandra from NZ wrote on September 8th, 2013
    • Weight isn’t such a big factor as head circumference for difficulty. Once the head is out, the shoulders are the next most difficult part and then it’s all done. The weight is only a very approximate correlation to the issue of relative baby/pelvis size.

      So in that sense, that’s a “cop out” an explanation. At any rate, the birth weight of an individual baby isn’t really known until it’s all over, regardless of trends. (And we don’t really have a good way of estimating birth weight pre-birth.)

      IMO, rising standards (to the point of perfection) around birth and the general perception of the relative safety of C-sections explains a whole lot more. Why make birth “hard” if the surgeon can do his work in less than an hour and it’s done for everyone? (Well, except for the mother and any future babies… :( )

      Amy wrote on September 9th, 2013
  12. Really enjoyed reading back about starting at zero. I would love to read your thoughts on staying primal while on a road trip. In a couple of weeks we are going to be driving 2000 miles across the country, staying in hotel rooms and eating on the road. I hate the idea of fast food for every meal but cooking just won’t be an option!

    Christine wrote on September 8th, 2013
  13. Just a beautiful story on the Yanomami. Brought tears to my eyes.

    Nocona wrote on September 8th, 2013
  14. OOOH
    interesting “VFF” story!

    MizFit wrote on September 9th, 2013
  15. The video about going outside was great. Quick and fact filled. I guess we always knew it was good to get outside, this just reinforces that.
    Vitamin D from sun = better health …easy enough.

    Tom T. wrote on September 9th, 2013
  16. Hi

    can you make a google+ page for The Primal Blueprint Publishing, not all of us wants to deal with Facebook …

    thanks

    google + wrote on September 9th, 2013
  17. Recently I read a book published in 1970 called In the Shadow of a Rainbow that mentioned Vibrams. That was a surprise.
    It’s a really good story. It’s embellished a bit and I’m not sure how much is true but it’s about a Native in British Colombia who befriends the chief wolf of a pack and then runs with the wolves for a while.
    I have a mouse friend – or more of an acquaintance – where I’m living. I first saw it in the winter. It was living in the same abandoned trailer as me, feeding off my scraps. After about a month absence from my area I returned close to the trailer in my newer shelter (a clothing donation bin with the bottom out, turned on its side with mosquito netting over the bottom and the opening, which is one side, that serves both as a window and two shelves) and I was wearing a headlamp and turned my head and there was the mouse, crawling down the corner of the bottom of the bin, with a mouse smile on its face.
    Earlier this year I was also familiar with a raccoon that I fed sometimes. It would come within about ten feet of me.

    Animanarchy wrote on September 9th, 2013
    • Nice to hear from you Animanarchy. You are one with nature in spriit.

      Janice wrote on September 9th, 2013
  18. the article about Alzheimer’s only briefly mentions breastfeeding. I think lack of breastfeeding in Western countries has alot more to do with impaired immune function than hygiene.
    Our first dose of immune cells is supposed to come from our mother’s mature immune system. Research has been done to show so many benefits to breastfeeding, including better immune systems, that it’s a shame more focus on correlation of disease with formula-feeding isnt studied.
    Also, we know how important gut bacteria are to our immune function, and breastfeeding introduces friendly microbes to a baby’s gut too.
    Combine the lack of breastfeeding with crappy, inflammatory foods over several decades, and there you have a recipe for diseases of all kinds (as we know).
    The Pottenger’s Cats experiments comes to mind – how long can we eat crap from the first day of our lives, to the last, without it affecting us and our kids?

    HopelessDreamer wrote on September 10th, 2013
  19. Hi John – Congrats on completing your opus! Looking forward to reading it. I’ve been primal for 3 years now, & you’re certainly one of the good guys. After a few years of much needless rancor among the “paleo” troops, your book is a much-needed breath of fresh air. Experimentation (N=1) rules the roost. Enjoy the afterglow & don’t succumb to too many chips… or too many “paleo” groupies!

    Ron wrote on September 10th, 2013

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