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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Tag: pets

Dear Mark: Drinking Breast Milk and Supplemental Foods For Dogs

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering two questions. First, what’s the deal with adult humans drinking human breast milk? It appears to be a bit of a “movement,” but does it make nutritional sense? Does breast milk offer any unique benefits to grown humans? Then, I answer a reader question about giving coconut oil to dogs and followup with a wider discussion of potentially beneficial supplemental foods for our furry best friends.

Let’s go:

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The Primal Laws: 7 More Honorable Mentions

A couple months back, I gave you a list of Primal Laws that didn’t quite make the cut, either because they weren’t “big” enough or didn’t apply to enough people. Turns out I was probably wrong: the response was huge and many of you were on the same wavelength. You even offered up some of your own ideas for honorable mentions. So today, I’m giving you 7 more honorable mentions that almost deserved a spot on the final list of Primal Laws. Read the post, take what resonates with you and discard what doesn’t. But give the article a fair shake and really consider how adopting these laws could improve your life.

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Dear Mark: More of Your 21-Day Challenge Questions Answered

Today, I’m doing another batch of 21-Day Challenge questions pulled from the ones you asked me two weeks ago. I managed to make it onto the third page of comments. I’d hoped to get through all of them, but with over 200 questions asked, the task proved insurmountable! Since they were by and large really great questions that deserve serious answers, though, I expect I’ll be drawing on them for future editions of Dear Mark. Stay tuned for that in the future.

This week, we’ve got questions about weight machine training, indoor sprinting, eating for drinking “more than moderately,” feeding kids, going Primal with a failing kidney, exercising kids, balancing sleep and exercise, going Primal as a vegetarian, and much more.

Let’s go:

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How to Ensure Your Final Years Are Good Ones

We talk about aging gracefully, but what does it mean? How does one age gracefully? To me, it means ensuring your final years are good ones. Basically, we want to avoid the “regular” maladies of aging like dementia, osteoporosis, blindness, sarcopenia, and immobility. We want to live long and drop dead, not live long and wither away from a host of degenerative illnesses that prevent our ability to enjoy or even experience life, relegated to a bare room tucked away in a building somewhere. That scares me more than anything, more than heart disease or cancer or shark attacks: helplessness.

When I’m nearing 100, I want to be able to…

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The Human-Animal Connection

I imagine most of us have (or have had) animals in our lives – pets at home, livestock on the farm, and so forth. For me, it’s a yellow lab named Buddha. True to his title, he has some calm, composed moments – mostly in the glory of outdoor adventures, but he’s just as much an example of big, slobbery enthusiasm. (Such is the life of a labrador retriever.) He’s been a faithful pal, eager workout companion, and much-needed comic relief more times than I can recall. When I’m in need of time away from society, he gets a special pass to join me. There’s just something different about hanging out with a dog – or most animals, I’d venture to say. There’s more to the human-animal connection, however, than just playing fetch. Throughout human existence, animals have acted as companions, protectors, and workmates. They’ve herded alongside us in the fields, accompanied us in battle, aided us in rescue missions, comforted us in illness and trauma, acted as service animals, stood by as patient and loyal friends. Experts have long examined this deep, even innate bond. Among the more intriguing theories are those that suggest our relationships with animals contributed to our species’ evolution and helped define our very sense of humanity.

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Dogs Teach Tricks, Too

Ever watch dogs at play, carefree? Next time you go on an off-leash hike with a canine, or even just a walk around the neighborhood, watch how they just jog along. Assuming they aren’t in pursuit of cat, squirrel, or pedestrian, it’s an easy trot, an effortless series of flicks of the ankle joints. It’s smooth, and their heads and shoulders stay mostly level with the ground. No off balanced dipping or stumbling. Oh, sure, the composure goes out the window when a frisbee’s let fly and they tear off after it, tongue flapping and fur rustling and muscles pumping, but to watch a calm, curious off-leash dog trot around, checking out the surroundings, sniffing, and just taking it all in is to watch an animal at total, complete ease in his own (furry) skin. We can learn a lot from watching dogs, as I have from my own Yellow Lab, Buddha.

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Dear Mark: The Primal Cat Diet on the Cheap?

Dear Mark,

What’s the least expensive way to move in the direction of feeding raw? What raw meats can I ask my butcher for that might be very cheap and suitable for cats?

Thanks, Greg, for the question.

Contrary to popular belief, the toughest thing about feeding your cats a raw diet isn’t the cost. It’s the convenience factor. The types of meat that you should be feeding your cats can actually be had on the cheap, especially so since adult cats only need about 2-3% of their body weight’s worth of meat per day. For example, one of our Worker Bees manages to feed his 75 lb dog a healthy, robust raw diet for around $2.50 per day – not as cheap as bargain bin kibble, necessarily, but far more affordable than buying premium, nutritionally inferior store chow. Now, consider that your 10 lb cat only requires a fraction of that amount (plus the vet bills you’ll save by having a truly healthy cat) and it becomes clear that the only thing standing between you and transitioning to a raw diet is how much effort you’re willing to put forth (and, I suppose, the intrinsic fickleness of a cat).

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The Primal Eating Plan for Cats

If we subscribe to the idea that our bodies are hardwired to thrive on the food consumed by our ancestors, it should follow that the same is true for domesticated animals. After all, we are little more than domesticated hunter-gatherers. A few months back, we discussed the Primal eating plan for dogs. Using the same principles that guide the Primal Blueprint, it makes sense that the descendants of wolves would thrive on raw meaty bones. This prompted a few readers to ask about cats. Can cats thrive on a Primal eating plan?

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The Primal Eating Plan for Dogs

We imagine many of our readers are strict adherents to the Primal Blueprint. You?re downing almonds by the bushel, guzzling fish oil, and avoiding grains like the plague, but what are you feeding Fido? Our bodies have had over ten thousand years to get used to agrarianism ? and the stuff is still killing us! Commercial kibble has only been around for fifty years. Imagine how dogs feel.

Consider the wolf, a dog?s closest relative. Wolves are hunters and scavengers, relying primarily on animal protein. They are not, however, accomplished chefs. Check out a wolf?s den. No pots, no pans, no range stove. Not even a salt shaker. They were on the raw diet before it became hip. You won?t see wolves feasting on Purina; they eat raw meat, and lots of it.

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Pet Smarts: Keeping Family Members of the Canine and Feline Variety Healthy

You do everything in your power to keep yourself – and your family – healthy, but is there more you could be doing for your four-legged friend?

The following is a list of tips on how to keep your pet in tip-top condition.

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