Month: December 2014
In the dim light of morning here, I’m thinking we’ll all wake up to varying ways of observing the day. Whether or not yours is a spiritual celebration today, there’s something to the collective tradition and cultural pause.
We might gather with ones we love or send our greetings from afar. We might share our meal and company today with strangers in either friendly camaraderie or personal service. We might spend the day in intentional or ambivalent solitude. Whatever your circumstances and celebration, however, I hope the day offers you the chance to recharge your physical self, to enjoy the experiences and connections that fill you, to honor the good in your life past and present.
I know I’m grateful today for my health, for my family and friends, for valued work and for the gracious and inspiring community here. With best wishes to each and every one of you, happy holidays….
Whether you’re celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah, the Winter Solstice, or any of the other holidays that fall in and around late December, there are common experiences. Hosts hustle to get their homes decorated, cleaned, and ready for guests. Workers send emails and get caught up on everything before the holiday slow down. Shoppers fight throngs for mall parking spots and knit scarves; smarter shoppers wait patiently for the delivery truck to show up. Families gather. Gifts are exchanged. Food is prepared. Food is eaten. Merriment pervades and holiday cheer hangs in the air.
According to AAA, nearly 100 million Americans will be traveling during what they call the “year-end holiday season” (Dec. 23-Jan. 4). On the positive side, this means possibly spending quality time with family and friends, experiencing new destinations or enjoying a break from the routine of work and (at least some) domestic duties. On the other hand, it can mean a lot of sedentary time, roadside food, poor sleep, collective stress and airport crowds (with their accompanying germs). When the hoopla ends, some of us will greet the New Year relatively unscathed with little more than mild fatigue and gratitude for some peace and quiet. Others, however, will succumb to the added pressures on physical and mental health and spend a portion of their travel time (or what was supposed to be travel time) nursing an illness. It’s little wonder, given the holidays offer the perfect set-up with their intersection of extra-everything when we probably do better with less of, well, just about all of it. It’s a practical Primal question: how can we keep ourselves healthy (and sane) when the best intentions of the season turn on us?
For today’s edition of Dear Mark, we’ve got a four-parter. First up, how safe are indoor candles? Do some emit toxic fumes? Are there certain types of candles we should prefer over others? The second question concerns the carb content of Quest Bars. Can we really disregard all the fiber and sugar alcohols when determining the amount of digestible carbohydrates contained in the bars? Third, what should a high school track athlete look for in a minimalist running shoe, assuming Vibram Fivefingers are out of the question? I help her narrow down the most important attributes. And finally, I may caution against making high omega-6 nut oils like walnut oil a daily staple, but do those recommendations change if a person is using it to actively solve a health issue?
I was on the Paleo Magazine Radio podcast to talk about some extremely important aspects of a healthy lifestyle (and they don’t include diet).
My appearance on The Chalene Show podcast, where Chalene and I discussed my history and I broke down the Primal Blueprint, is now live. Go give a listen.
I also appeared on the Self Made Entrepreneur podcast with Jason Bax. If you’re interested in how I came to start, run, and grow Primal Nutrition, check it out!
Research of the Week
I was just thinking we were due for another round of articles telling us how we’ve got this whole evolutionary health thing totally wrong.
Meals like this oven-baked chowder are exactly the type of recipes that instantly become keepers. Why? The chowder is deeply flavorful and the fish and veggies cook perfectly every time, with little assistance from you. Plus, it’s a one-pot meal that serves up both protein and veggies and leaves behind only a few dirty dishes.
Change the recipe up seasonally with different vegetables, or stick with this tried and true combination of parsnips, carrots and bell pepper. Using different types of fish is an option, too; sea bass and halibut are always delicious, and wild salmon, of course, is never a bad choice for its abundant omega-3s.
Is this traditional chowder? No, but it’s just as good (or maybe even better).