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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December 20, 2017

The Best of 2017: Research Insights and Other Breakthroughs

By Mark Sisson
28 Comments

2017 written on the sand of a beach, travel 2017 new year conceptEach year is fuller than the last. More and more scientific papers are published each year, and that trend is only quickening. The same trend goes for books, products, businesses. Humans are incredible producers. It’s what we do—create and consume.

So, whenever I do a “year in review” type of post, it’s harder than the previous year. There’s too much to cover. Hell, in 2017 alone there were over 17,000 papers published on saturated fat17,000.

But let’s give it a shot. What are some takeaways as we finish out 2017?

1. Vegetable oils are still really, really bad.

2. Keto works.

3. Everything has a circadian rhythm, and the circadian rhythm affects everything.

4. What the Health, this year’s token vegan screed, came out to rapturous applause. In one of my favorite pieces of the year, Robb Wolf took it apart piece by piece and, in doing so, definitively commented on anti-meat hysteria and bad science in general.

5. We learned that the sugar industry has been stifling anti-sugar research results for decades, surprising no one while enraging almost everyone (with an honest bone in their body).

6. We learned more and more about ancient human evolution and migration. It turns out that our history is even crazier and more impressive than we thought.

7. Human gene editing drew ever nearer to the mainstream.

8. Awareness of digital media’s effect on our health and happiness grew.

9. There was serious debate over whether we’re educating and parenting our kids the right way.

10. Even as health and food-related tech has largely come up short, there were some promising developments.

11. I had a few momentous occasions happen that really made the year for me:

I’ve been doing this thing for over 10 years now, and it still feels fresh, still feels new and exciting. Because despite all the studies, developments, news reports, and personal experimentation, we still don’t know much of anything. A whopping 99% of the gut biome is a complete mystery, for example. There’s a lot more for us to learn. I look forward to sharing  and discussing it with all of you.

What were your big takeaways for 2017?

Thanks for reading, everyone. Take care and be well.

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28 Comments on "The Best of 2017: Research Insights and Other Breakthroughs"

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wildgrok
wildgrok
2 months 4 days ago

Wow thanks, I have a whole year to process all this information 🙂

wildgrok
wildgrok
2 months 4 days ago

As said before – YES is the answer

“Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?”

Just got a reminder of that some minutes ago: there were five people on my workplace waiting for the elevators (me included). Four of them were on the phones. Guess who was the fifth one not on the phone

Timothy
2 months 4 days ago
Keto leads to weight gain! That’s hilarious! I’ve now spent almost three months trying my hardest to gain weight on keto, eating to the limits of my appetite, and I’ve put on maybe one pound. Compare this with bulking on carbs and gaining about 20 in the same span of time. (Not the good kind of weight gain.) Thank you, Mark, for this intellectual red meat. Does anybody want to pick this Sydney Morning Herald article apart with me? Course you do. Let’s pick it apart. “Mice that stay on a keto diet eventually become obese.” Their diet was 80%… Read more »
mims
2 months 4 days ago
I congratulate you on your success with keto, but I think it is a “your mileage may vary” type of thing. I have tried keto twice now, once in winter, once in summer, for a month at a time, eating clean fats and meat (not CAFO) and gained three pounds and felt terrible. I am a almost 60 year old menopausal woman with an autoimmune disorder. My fasting blood sugars went from normal to 130 too. My constitution does much better on a whole foods plant based diet with much less fat. Different strokes for different folks. I think these… Read more »
Timothy
2 months 4 days ago
This is really interesting! You make the important points that we can’t generalize from our individual experiences to others, nor can we make blanket statements that a particular diet is always good or always bad. However compelling a theory is, we have to test it to know the truth. At the same time, we can’t afford to wait 20 years (200, 2000?) for all the studies to be done. We are determined to achieve positive health outcomes while we are still alive! Your case is particularly intriguing because your fasting blood glucose actually went up on keto. This is not… Read more »
Carol
Carol
2 months 4 days ago

I am 57, and in the same boat, and I was a faithful WW until menopause, when I began gaining weight faster than I could lose it. I have switched over to Keto, which wasn’t hard since I have celiac’s. I am losing weight and feeling great.

Timothy
2 months 3 days ago

By WW, do you mean Weight Watchers? If so I would be curious to know your assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of that program in light of your current experience.

Curtis
2 months 4 days ago

“Otherwise they should continue eating just, you know, whatever.” LOVE it. Hahaha! Speaking the truth, as always. I second your first point. I have not gained a pound on keto and I’ve been on it for more than two months.

HealthyHombre
HealthyHombre
2 months 4 days ago

Congrats on all your success in 2017 Mark and thanks for all the valuable information you generate / analyze / synthesize and the great products and services you provide. What 2017 concepts emphasized for me is to improve my circadian rhythm, cut back on social media, and add some more fat to my diet. Have a long way to go to optimize all those factors. Onward and upward!

Kate
Kate
2 months 4 days ago

Many thanks to you, Mark, for the great work you do. Over the past three years you’ve changed my life. Have a Happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year!

Anthony Munkholm
2 months 4 days ago

Look forward to trying to get through the whole post. The biggest takeaway for me is that after completing the Primal certification, running a very successful weight loss group at my gym, the next step to push me was to take the plunge and buy me PaleoFX tickets for 2018 and surround myself with like minded individuals. I think going this coming year will give me the extra nudge I need and I so look forward to meeting Mark in person and thanking him for all the good he has brought to my life!

Terri Hartley
2 months 4 days ago

My favorite line item: The Unabomber Had a Point.

Faith2014
Faith2014
2 months 4 days ago

I’ll admit to skimming the review of What The Health, but I had already suffered through more than 1/2 of it a few months ago.

I think I’ll budget a donation to making a movie showing a more balanced view of meat.

I’m old enough to remember when documentaries tried to show some of the “other” side, and to be somewhat objective. Now, the shows are all one-sided propaganda.

Will Wilkin
1 month 24 days ago

https://www.generosity.com/fundraising/kale-vs-cow-the-case-for-better-meat–2

Kale vs. Cow makes the case for better meat—and shows how eliminating animals from our food system could cause more harm than good.

wildgrok
wildgrok
2 months 4 days ago
This takeaway was important for me: Now I have a single dinner at night (between 6 and 8pm) One of the unexpected goodies of this is that at work I am evenly productive the whole day, no after lunch slowdown (even with a PB correct lunch) On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays I add a mini lunch of one apple and one banana and 1/2 cup of wine ((with added water). I have daily bulletproof coffees as breakfast My body fat percent (measured by the same electronic scale) is always under 17% (I have readings of 15%) And my weight hovers… Read more »
Kathy
Kathy
2 months 4 days ago

You certainly have covered a lot of subjects in the last year. I have read every one and look forward to the new year. Congratulations on all your accomplishments. We need more folks like you to spread the word about health. I am still hoping your will come to Canada for a seminar in the future. All the best to you and your Family.

Chris
Chris
2 months 4 days ago
You aren’t the only one with great success in 2017, Mark! Thanks to you, your blog, Dr. Maffetone, and everyone on the Facebook groups, I am finally back into my groove as far as physical fitness goes. From 2012 to 2014, I scored >90% on my Air Force Physical Fitness Test (AFPFT) while following a conventional approach to training and eating which ultimately led to a hip injury in January 2015. It was then that I discovered Dr. Maffetone and eventually MDA. I didn’t put the stuff I was learning into practice until mid-2016. By then I had scored 2… Read more »
NaturalGirl
NaturalGirl
2 months 4 days ago

Love, love, love this article. So much wonderful information here. Thank you.

Sonja Stendera
Sonja Stendera
2 months 4 days ago

What exactly is the difference between zhe book ‘The 21-day body transformation’ and the Keto rest book (also 21 day stuff)??? I have the first one and you ha´ve to convince me why I should buy the latter one, please.

Caroline Hind
2 months 4 days ago
Hi Sonja, I have both books. The Keto Reset uses the 21-day transformation principles to help people prepare for experimenting with Keto. It’s like an induction phase to ensure that the body is better at burning fat before attempting periods of ketosis. If you’re already primal then you’re right that this part of the book won’t be new to you. Most of the book, though, discusses the benefits, how-to, pitfalls, etc. of going keto, with Mark and Brad’s latest take on it all. I find it a good read, very up-to-date and, though I didn’t think I needed yet more… Read more »
Ravi Gupta
2 months 4 days ago

Hi Mark , This is a wonderful information,I really like read your Article . Thank you so much. Many thanks to you,

Lou
Lou
2 months 4 days ago

Hi All, is anybody aware of a 21 day ‘starter’ program for lacto-ovo vegetarians? I know it’s not your typical primal/paleo approach, and no I’m not meat shaming, we just don’t eat meat! I know there’s a lot of info about, and we try to stick to it, but a lazy way out would be nice 🙂

Shary
Shary
2 months 3 days ago

Meat isn’t necessary for everyone. I’ve known a couple of people who were quite healthy and active on a diet that was mostly rice, legumes, and vegetables. If that sort of eating plan works well for you, then great. Otherwise, I’m not sure what sort of 21-day starter program you’d be looking for. Paleo does include significant amounts of animal protein, both for satiety and sufficient calorie intake as well as certain nutrients. Maybe you could be more specific.

Angie
2 months 4 days ago

Oh, what a great round-up! So much to digest here. Thanks!

sander
sander
2 months 3 days ago

Thank you for the link to the Robb Wolf article. It was not only informative and factual, but also hilarious.

Zach zach rusk
2 months 2 days ago

Edible oils study seems to be designed by idiots: they lumped partially hydrogenated oil with palm oil and called them both saturated fatty acids.

Mia Thompson
Mia Thompson
1 month 29 days ago

Just wanted to take a minute to thank you personally for developing Primal bars. These are so perfect for me with collagen and pre-biotic fiber, I needed something so bad that I could eat at work on my non-lunch breaks and on vacation when I dearly miss my beloved smoothie. These are a life saver, Mark, thank you!

alan
alan
1 month 25 days ago

well done mark

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