It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. In fact, I have a contest going right now. So if you have a story to share, no matter how big or how small, you’ll be in the running to win a big prize. Read more here.
My name is Andrew Mencher. I live in Long Island, New York. I am 27 years old.
Starting the new year of 2016, like new years past, my then girlfriend, now fiancé, and I decided to begin the new year fresh with a healthy attitude.
This year was different, however. I was living with the love of my life, not alone, and little did she know at the time I had been planning to propose. Starting in January, with little research and only Conventional Wisdom to guide us, we began to eat less meat as a start. This failed for me, big time. I began to eat more grains and quick foods just to fill the gap in energy levels I felt. (Side note: I am lactose intolerant so cheese and milk and other delicious nutritious items that could have filled the gap is a no-go for me). I began to bloat more and feel tired and sluggish. I gave up on that after a month and began to eat animals again.
A little bird told me the other day that it might not be a bad time to talk about the impact of emotions on our health—particularly our choice to express or not express them. I’ve heard people around me share that they’re worn out lately—that emotions have imposed a toll regardless of how well they keep their own in check. It got me thinking. Increasingly, researchers uncover the remarkable imbrication of mental and physical well-being. How we nourish or neglect our physical selves affects how we feel psychologically. Likewise, the emotional terrain we traverse throughout a day, in turn, elicits its own physiological feedback. Yet in this culture, there’s a certain esteem for the stiff upper lip. We restrain ourselves for the sake of others—our perception of their comfort and/or of their opinion of us. But are we sacrificing something in doing so? When does the polite instinct to suppress our emotions benefit us, and when does it backfire?
Many years ago (I initially wrote that in jest, but it has been almost seven years), I wrote a definitive guide to oils, covering the benefits and drawbacks of over a dozen of the most common edible oils. Seven years is plenty of time for new data to come out, new perspectives to develop, and even new oils to hit the market. How would I go back and update my previous recommendations?
Most of it stands. The fatty acid breakdown and overall assessment of each oil remain valid and sound. Olive oil is still olive oil (unless it’s not). 2016 peanut oil is identical to 2010 peanut oil. If you’re interested in the basics or want to see my 2010 take on edible oils, go ahead and read through the Definitive Guide to Oils.
For years, wine was my stress reliever at the end of a long day. Having given up grains and grain-based beverages over a decade ago, I swapped beer for wine. It was my frequent dinner companion. Grilled grass-fed ribeye wasn’t grilled grass-fed ribeye without a glass of California Cab. And then I suspected my 1-2 glass a night habit was impairing my gut health and affecting my sleep. I ran a quick experiment, determined that the nightly wine indeed was having bad effects, and stopped drinking altogether.
It worked. My gut health and sleep improved. Yet I still missed wine. I missed pitting the crunch of an aged Gouda’s tyrosine crystals against a big red, lingering over a glass with an old friend, clinking glasses, giving toasts. I missed what Hemingway called “one of the most civilized things in the world and one of the most natural things in the world that has been brought to the greatest perfection.” But I didn’t miss the poor sleep and gut disturbances.
For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering four questions. First, are ground meats actually better for your glycine:methionine ratio, seeing as they contain all sorts of weird bits? Next, are the dairy proteins casein and albumin worth including in one’s protein arsenal? Third, is eating beef heart for its CoQ10 content another example of “eat like for like”? And finally, what’s my take on a recent article in the Atlantic about the futility of commonly-available probiotics?
I talked at length about lessons learned in my endurance career on the Tri Swim Coach Podcast.
RESEARCH OF THE WEEK
80% of Chinese clinical trials use falsified data.
Copper doorknobs fight infections.
Dogs and humans share genes for socializing (and social disorders).
Older women who consume more than 261 mg caffeine per day (2-3 cups of coffee, 5-6 cups of tea) have a lower risk of dementia.
A new study spanning 42 European countries finds no association between saturated fat and cardiovascular disease, the lowest risk among those eating the most fat and animal protein, and the highest risk among those eating the most refined carbs. Huh.
Bees just made the endangered species list for the first time ever. Congratulations!