The popular story of how low-carb diets work goes something like this: Reducing your carbohydrate in...
Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...Tell Me More
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5 easy tips to feel healthier now:
1. Each morning, drink a tall glass of water with a few squeezes of fresh lemon juice. You’ll feel noticeably less “puffy” within two days. (Warning: if you also drink a morning jolt of java, the acidity may get to be too much, so eat a little breakfast and consider skipping coffee.)
2. Stop what you’re doing and take ten deep breaths. Concentrate on drawing the breath up from your kidneys; visualize pushing it down into your stomach as you exhale. Feels great.
3. Don’t get overwhelmed – think in terms of “relative nutrition”. This is my term for putting health information in perspective. Getting healthier can seem overwhelming, especially if you’re just starting out or are recovering from an illness. Yes, hitting the gym, meditating, and eating organic, raw, pure food all day long and tossing out the microwave would probably be ideal (in some universe). Instead, think in terms of healthy as it relates to your current habits.
I suggest that you concentrate on taking 4 or 5 steps and applying them consistently. You can change and add more healthy habits as you progress, but even a handful of simple modifications can do a lot of relative good. I’m not advocating a “make half your grains whole” approach like the Food Pyramid – that’s irresponsible public health guidance when we know that refined grains are so unhealthy. But, don’t expect immediate perfection of yourself – it’s unrealistic.
The important thing is to work gradually towards that paradigm shift (moving from merely accenting with healthy foods or behaviors to practicing health as a lifestyle – the “cheats” become the accent, as they should). You’ll get a lot of healthy mileage out of just a few basic changes: for example, tossing the sodas, switching to salads for lunch every day, and making a point of going on a walk after dinner each night will improve your mood, help you drop a few pounds in just two weeks, and help you sleep better. Who wouldn’t love all that?
4. Toss the sodas! (And the sugary lattes, “juice” drinks, and milk shakes…) Don’t drink your calories. Craving a sweet beverage? You may simply be dehydrated.
5. When you dine out this week – as most of us do at least 30% of the time – just say no to the starchy sides and bread basket. Ask for vegetables as a substitute. You’ll cut hundreds of calories, lower your blood sugar, and actually be less hungry later on.
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[tags]water, relative nutrition, whole grains, food pyramid, sodas, cravings[/tags]
Keep in mind tonight: when the evening news talks about heart disease killing 1 in 3 women, that’s not 1 in 3 women who have heart disease. That’s 1 in 3 women – across the board.Read More
Worker Bees’ Daily Bites We’re feeling feisty. Something about Tuesdays… Wait, what are we talking about – we’re feisty every day. Sisson’s top picks are downright controversial today, so dig in: Blue Genes You may have heard the news yesterday that carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by genes, not overuse (then why do so many office assistants get…sigh…who are we to question a study). Well, evidently, you can blame your happiness – or lack of it – on your parents, too. So, parents, on top of being lame, nerdy, totally not cool, a dorky dresser, using slang – like – so wrong, and just generally being out of it, you are also responsible for your child’s future grumpy reaction to the Tivo being broken. Look, genes clearly play a big role in who we are – they’re literally…well…who we are. But how productive or empowering it is to hand over responsibility for your emotions and choices to the past, which is out of your control? While this kind of news is interesting, it can also be emotionally limiting, especially when one tiny study gets sensationalized by the media, as with this week’s stories. We’re all for genetic research, but when it starts getting into the “blame game” territory the media love so much, we sure wish we could push it back into the “cure disease” territory. We Have to Smerck Poor little Merck. After what can only be described as “mad aggressive” lobbying tactics for their HPV vaccine, Gardasil, Merck announced this week that they’re giving up for now to focus on preventing cervical cancer instead. (Isn’t that what vaccinating with Gardasil would be doing? Sounds like Pharma spin to us). Human papilloma virus, if untreated, can lead to deadly cervical cancer. Enter Gardasil, a vaccine to stop HPV. Merck began lobbying politicians way back, before the Feckless Death Association (that’s FDA) had even approved Gardasil. Merck, and many state governments, weren’t expecting the overwhelming controversy that ensued, largely fueled by conservative groups concerned that inoculating against cervical cancer might send a message to girls that premarital sexual activity is O.K. We welcome differing opinions on this one. While we’re no friends of Merck, and we’re all for abstinence and parental rights, it is a little unclear to us how inoculating a twelve-year-old against potential cancer would actually encourage said child to begin having, um, relations. (In our view, the apparent widespread social acceptance of inappropriate advertising is what is really causing problems with many children’s healthy emotional development, particularly for girls – and we hope you’ll write your senator and make him or her do something about it.) (Jean Scheijen photo.) Ultimately, the bigger concern – for the health hipsters, anyway – was this speedy FDA approval yet another wise decision for public health on the part of Uncle Sam? How safe is this vaccine to begin with? The idea of preventing cancer is pretty appealing, but this is Merck we’re dealing with. We’ll look into it and report … Continue reading “No More Peanut Butter, No More Toast ‘n Jam”Read More
The Tuesday 10: Smoking. You know you need to quit. Not exactly easy when Big Puff keeps increasing the amount of nicotine in cigarettes – how do these people sleep at night? We’ll spare you the terrible health facts – if you’re here, if you want to quit, you probably already know them all. And you know that quitting will take major effort. Cigarettes are monstrously addictive, but you can quit smoking, if for no other reason than this: your mind is the most powerful computer on earth. Harness that power correctly and you can accomplish your goals. Accomplishment does take really hard work (and then even more really hard work). And it takes commitment. And investigation. But we bet you’ve got all that in spades. You’re here, aren’t you? Here’s a collection of the ten best places to start if you are going to quit smoking. From helpful tips to group support to new information, you’re in the right place! 10. 70 Tips Ought to Get You Started As always, Ririan has great practical tips for improving your life. This post covers 70 different ways to quit smoking and is adapted from… 9. Why Not? Why Quit is one of the oldest resources on the web for those who want to quit smoking. It’s also one of the best. 8. Don’t Be a Quitter Quitter There are thousands of bloggers who are working on the very same goal you are, right now, and it can help to remember you’re not alone. Get to know them. 7. More Reasons to Quit Now In case you just haven’t heard enough about the dangers of smoking, there are more than scientists ever thought possible. Here’s one of the latest findings. And here’s even more news. 6. Shocking Facts Some amazing things you might not know. 5. Can You Afford It? Cigarettes cost an additional $7 bucks per pack on top of the purchase price. Here’s the report – smoking costs the average smoker about four grand a year. Can you afford to smoke? 4. Why We Smoke Smoking just feels good. It may even serve an antidepressant role in the brain (so far only rat studies have confirmed this, but it’s pretty convincing). It gives us control. It’s soothing. Although we “want” to quit, we also really want to keep smoking. That’s not to make you feel bad, guilty or give up hope. It’s to shed some light on the situation so you can understand what you’re up against. The brain has two pleasure mechanisms, which is why addiction is such a mammoth to deal with. We can “want” and “like” simultaneously, but these functions are separate in the brain (thanks, brain). Over time, we can still “want” a substance (or person) even if we don’t like it – even if we totally fall-to-the-floor hate it. Pick up the March edition of Elle Magazine (yes, the one with Barbie…er, Jessica Simpson on the cover) to read Maia Szalavitz’s mind-bending and encouraging article … Continue reading “How to Quit Smoking”Read More
The Fuming Fuji is outraged at the marketing of toxic food, especially when it’s aimed at the small fry. This week, the Fuming Fuji has decided to have a serious problem with Cap’n Crunch.
But, Fuming Fuji, you say, Cap’n Crunch has been around forever! It’s the #1 children’s cereal in the country! Can’t you just cut us some slack for once?
The Fuming Fuji says no!
The claim: Quaker Oats says that Cap’n Crunch has a “unique, indescribable taste.”
The catch: That is because death is very difficult to describe the taste of, since you are dead when you taste it. Also, the Fuji is very tired of misspelled words, Captain.
The comeback: Come on, Fuji, that is ridiculous! A little sweetened cereal never hurt anyone.
The conclusion: The Fuji does not have patience for such insanity! I fume! Cap’n Crunch can take his puff pillows and stupid berries back to 1963 and stay there. Also, these Berries of Crunch are not even real berries, so the Fuji would like to inform Quaker Oats that they are in error. If you look up “berry” on Wikipedia you will see very clearly that berries are a fruit and not, in fact, a petrified corn flour sugar nugget. Also, berries do not come in teal.
The catchphrase: Avoid this Cap’n who would surely lose a spelling bee and his not-berry sugar nuggets! Unless you would like diabetes. Then, this is perfect.
Disclaimer: Mark Sisson and the Worker Bees do not necessarily endorse the views of the Fuming Fuji. Or something.
[tags]children’s health, Cap’n Crunch, cereal, breakfast, sugar nuggets, Pirate cereal, Pirate crunchy awesomeness, Pirate Captains, Dangerous and exotic Pirate Captain Cereal, Crunchy Pirates, Healthy Pirates, Unhealthy Pirates, entirely doomed and sugar plagued pirates[/tags]Read More