Meet Mark

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...

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Category: Diet & Nutrition

14 Ways To Hack an Ice Cube Tray

After so many great questions and suggestions on the comment board this month, we’ve got kitchen efficiency on our minds. Keeping a healthy Primal Kitchen running smoothly and economically isn’t hard, but some creative strategy sure makes it easier.

If you’re only freezing water in your ice cube tray, you’re missing out. Everything from herbs, to dark chocolate, to bacon fat and even wine can be frozen into flavor cubes that will change the way you cook. It’s all about more flavor, more convenience, and less waste.

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Primal Challenge Point: Stop Feeding the Sugar Cycle

It’s impossible to talk about using food as a drug without looking at the genuine neurological and hormonal impacts it has on the body. The fact is, certain foods affect us more like drugs than others.

With actual drug use, we’re not operating with innate satiation signaling. But with food, our bodies have a built-in system for telling us when to eat, how much to eat and when to stop.

In our paleolithic ancestors’ time, it worked great. Today, we’ve become our own saboteurs. We’ve known for years that sugary and processed foods (those that strategically combine sugar, salt and certain fats into a triple crown disaster) are intentionally designed to override our inherent satiation signals and hyper-trip our reward systems.

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Primal Knowledge Point: FODMAP

“Some people continue to suffer uncomfortable digestive problems despite omitting the foods they may be intolerant to. If there are no definite test results pointing at an allergy or intolerance, then you’ll most likely be diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Scientists Peter Gibson and Susan Shepherd at Moash University in Australia researched the reasons behind the vicious cycle of bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and discomfort. They came upon some evidence proving that certain sugars could actually be the cause of many of these ailments: ‘Fermentable Oligo-Di-Monosaccharides and Polyols,’ thus founding the term FODMAP.

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Dear Mark: Better Rest, and a Parent’s Nightmare: Tablets and Pickiness

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering two questions from readers. First, does “better rest” exist? I think it does, and I give the two “types” of rest I find to be the most effective. Second, a parent writes in with two common issues—pickiness at the dinner table and an obsession with tablets. What can a parent do to deal with a kid who only wants pasta and rice? And how to handle tablet obsession?

Let’s go:

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The Role of Supplementation in Keto: What’s Uniquely Useful

Yesterday, I explained my rationale for supplementation in a Primal lifestyle. Today, I’m going to get a bit more specific and discuss the role of supplementation on a keto diet. As a diet founded upon the restriction of an entire class of macronutrients, keto seems like the perfect candidate for stringent supplement requirements. And if you go around the web asking other people, you’ll find plenty of opinions, lists, and recommendations for this or that supplement that you absolutely must take or face certain death and disfigurement.

I disagree.

Done well, keto needs no overt supplementation. That said, some supplements can be useful.

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Grok Didn’t Take Supplements, So Why Should I? (and a Giveaway)

The main objective of following the Primal Blueprint is to extract the healthiest, happiest, longest and most productive life possible from our bodies – and to look and feel good in the process.

Our 10,000-year-old Primal genes expect us to emulate the way our ancestors ate and moved; and the Primal Blueprint says we should do exactly as they expect. While there are many things we can do (or eat) today that very closely approximate what Grok did to trigger positive gene expression, there are also a number of obstacles that can thwart our attempts to be as Primal as possible. Artificial light prompts us to stay up too late and sleep too little. Electronic entertainment competes for our time when we should be out walking and basking in sunlight. We don’t always have access to ideal foods. We shower too much in water that’s too hot. We use medicines to mask our symptoms instead of allowing our bodies to deal directly with the problem. You get my point. You can’t go back to the paleolithic.

One of my tasks is to find the shortcuts—the easy ways to get the same genetic expression benefits Grok got—but by using 21st century technology or just plain old common sense. Working out in Vibram Fivefingers to simulate going barefoot is an example. Or learning how to spend time in the sun without sunscreen AND without burning. Getting more from a 20-minute full-body exercise routine than from a 3-hour cardio workout is yet another example. And given the lack of certain critical nutrients in even the healthiest diets, finding the best supplements is another.

Here are a few of the best categories of supplements I can recommend to just about everyone:

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