Category: Carbs

A Brief History of U.S. Dietary Guidelines

Prior to 1980, how in the world did anyone know how to eat? When you think of all the centuries, the millennia of human existence, how did the species manage to survive bumbling their way through day after day of undirected eating patterns? I’m guessing those of you who know me expected a few irreverent remarks when you read the title of today’s post. Still, I’ll try to keep myself on a short leash today. It’s a legitimate and even, in some regards, culturally (and probably politically) significant question: why were government dietary guidelines ever put in place—and what was the backstory of their uses and modifications over time? Finally, what perspective can it bring to our understanding of embracing a “niche” dietary model like the Primal Blueprint?

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Why You Shouldn’t Be Afraid of Joining the Status Quo

The other day it occurred to me that we’re coming up on 10 years with this blog. In 2006, I started publishing (what were then) wacky, newfangled ideas about how people should go barefoot (or wear Vibrams), eat more animal fat, slash carbs and eschew grains altogether, avoid (most) vegetable oils, stand up while they work, expose themselves to cold, get off the chronic cardio wagon and climb trees or sprint down their streets like 9-year-olds. Finally, there was the proverbial (and ironic) icing on the cake of suggesting people ask what would Grok do—that now illustrious posterman for all things evolutionary. Ten years ago many of these ideas were still viewed as strange or even flat out wrong.

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The A-to-Z Guide to Leading a Primal Lifestyle

Print this out. Bookmark it. Send it to friends who don’t quite get the Primal thing. Consider this a valuable resource for all-things Primal. It’s a nice, alphabetical encapsulation of what it means to lead a Primal lifestyle. It’s not everything, of course. You can always dig deeper into the details, but this summary gives a high-level look at just about everything.

Without further ado, I present The A-to-Z Guide to Leading a Primal Lifestyle.

Avoid chronic cardio. I spent about half my life running (and later, with triathlons, swimming and cycling) myself into the ground. I thought the more miles I could log, the healthier I’d be. That’s the mindset many people have, and it’s absolutely wrong. Running a ten-miler is different than running a ten-miler every day. We have the capacity to go long distances and even outlast wild animals upon which we’re preying. We don’t have the capacity to do that every single day without consequences to our health. Run long distances if you love it, compete if you love competing, but know the cost it incurs.

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Dear Mark: Lead in Crock Pots, Norovirus in Smoked Oysters, and Creatine and Carbs

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering three questions from readers. First, what’s the deal with lead in crock pots? Some say lead leaches into the food when we cook with crock pots, while others aren’t so sure. And if the leaching of lead from crock pot ceramics into our food is, indeed, a problem, what equivalent product do I recommend? Next, a new study indicates that human norovirus is highly prevalent in oysters. Should we stop eating the canned smoked oysters from Crown Prince? And finally, do we really need to consume extra carbs with our creatine to get the full benefits?

Let’s go:

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Dear Mark: Pegan Dieting and Exercising in Air Pollution

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering two questions. The first comes from Lucas, a man whose wife is unable to eat meat without feeling sick to her stomach. As a result, she’s interested in pursuing a Pegan way of eating, or “paleo-vegan.” Is it possible to be healthy while emphasizing plant foods and avoiding most meat? Is there anything she should watch out for? And last but not least, what’s the deal with commuting to work on your bike amidst urban air pollution? We all know that active commutes are supposed to be healthier than riding in a metal box, but do the negatives of breathing all those airborne particulates outweigh the positives of riding your bike? Find out what I think.

Let’s go:

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Dear Mark: Ketosis and Cancer, Probiotic Dosing Patterns

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering two questions. First up, is the ketogenic diet an effective cancer treatment? There’s a lot of hype in the media and online world about ketosis, but what does the research really say? Then, I discuss a few different probiotic dosing patterns. Should you take them every day? Is there a benefit to switching brands from time to time? Should you ever megadose probiotics? How did ancient and preindustrial people “supplement” probiotics?

Let’s go:

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