Weekend Link Love – Edition 177

Listen to the Chrises Kresser and Masterjohn discuss cholesterol, thyroid hormone, iodine, goitrogens, and heart disease on the Revolution Health Radio podcast, their third on the subject. Here are parts one and two.

Baby’s got glutofemoral adipose tissue.

Less trans-fat is coursing through the blood of white American adults.

A recent study found that a lack of sun exposure was linked to a higher risk of stroke.

Why you should include unilateral lower body movements in your workouts and break up all that pure unadulterated back squatting from time to time.

America is overmedicated and depressed, but – luckily – there may be a simpler, more inexpensive, far more enjoyable way out.

Fasting improves the efficacy of chemotherapy and weakens cancer (better than chemotherapy alone, which was a total failure) in mice. Studies in humans have already begun. Here’s hoping they pan out!

The scale of the universe. It’s not really health-related, but boy if it isn’t engrossing and absolutely amazing.

Recipe Corner

  • Make something you’ve probably never made before: kimchi bokkeumbap.
  • If you’ve got the thyme, lemon lamb meatballs from Haley and Bill really hit the spot. Yes, I just made that joke.

Time Capsule

One year ago (Feb 6 – Feb 12)

Comment of the Week

I use honey to scrub my behind, leaves my skin soft & smooth as a baby’s face.

– Conrack’s comment from Wednesday’s honey post made me laugh quite heartily. Even the normally taciturn Worker Bees had to chuckle.

About the Author

Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.

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30 thoughts on “Weekend Link Love – Edition 177”

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  1. The article on unilateral movements was really interesting. I sure would love to see MDA have Workouts Of the Week once again, along the lines of crossfit but mainly focusing on body weight workouts.
    Enjoyed the scale of the universe link- the universe is so amazingly complex isn’t it? Definately made by a Creator with a plan!

    1. There’s a fellow with some internet visibility (Ken Hutchins with Renaissance Exercise)who argues that no one should do any form of unilateral exercise, especially unilateral leg work; he says it’s dangerous. Does anyone know anything about this. His claim strikes me as a bit off.

    2. Yes to everything you just said. I miss the workouts of the weeks, and I would love to see them come back in a big way with bodyweight workouts as the main focus.

    3. either that or our brains like to assign pattern and meaning , where there is none.

  2. so happy that MDA is up and running again! Awesome links as always, and I love the recipes! I’ve made lemon-thyme lamb sausage before, its an awesome combination 🙂

  3. Regarding fasting to slow the growth of cancer, I wonder if this is due to the denial of glucose which tumors need to develope.

    I remember reading in “God Calories Bad Calories” that tumor cells use up a large amout of glucose because they don’t process it very efficiently compared to normal cells.

    Carrying this idea further, what if cancer patients could profit from the Vilhjalmur Stefansson diet, in which he ate nothing but meat for an entire year under highly controlled conditions with no ill effects?

    Look this up in Gary Taubes’ book if you don’t believe it.

    1. That’s an Interesting idea. Maybe I’ve got it wrong, but I thought all food is broken down into glucose, it just depends on how fast the process happens. I guess it depends on the amount too right? As in different foods would produce different amounts of glucose?

      1. Carbohydrates and sugars are broken down into glucose. Everything else is not.
        If a person is subsisting on a meat+fat only diet (something like an Inuit diet I suppose), the body goes into ketosis and burns fat for energy. Different metabolic process.
        Theoretically, cancer tumors that need glucose wouldn’t be able to get their nutrition.

        1. Ah duh! That’s right haha. I understand, nicely explained. Thank you!

    2. The liver produces glucose. So, even on a ketogenic diet there is always glucose in circulation. However, the CNS (central nervous system – includes the brain) requires glucose on an ongoing basis. Thus, the glucose produced by the liver is readily taken up by the CNS on a priority basis.

      1. I believe the mid-brain is the only part of the brain that required glucose. The rest of it is happy with ketones.

        1. My understanding is that while the brain can utilize either ketones or glucose, that glucose will be utilized preferentially. The advantage (for the brain) of a ketogenic diet is that there will always be either ketones or glucose available on a steady basis.

          IF the above notion is correct, and given the amount of fuel needed by the brain on a daily basis, then under ketogenic conditions virtually all glucose will be taken up by the CNS.

          And, IF, the above notion is correct, then tumors may be starved of glucose. Thus, a ketogenic diet could effectively be considered an anti-cancer diet.

          Wouldn’t that be a lovely idea, anyway?

    3. I think this was a big part of “Cooley’s Toxins”, too (maybe it was ‘Coley’). Starve the bastards and then kill ’em while they’re weak. And then von Warburg discovered their dependence on glucose in the 30’s.

      1. Would make the horrible nausea that often accompanies chemo start to look like a blessing as well as a curse – or a blessing in disguise.

  4. I want to emphasize a distinction that Chris Masterjohn made in the podcast interview about soy not being a goitrogen.

    There, he specifies that FERMENTED soy is a good anti-goitrogen. This is distinct from the processed GMO soy that’s now in seemingly 99% of products in American supermarkets. (Though Masterjohn confuses the matter by saying that there’s a myth claiming FERMENTED soy is actually a goitrogen. I’ve never heard that, and all the studies I’ve read about soy specifically emphasize the processed soy as the thyroid destroyer, not fermented soy.)

    Please make sure to NOT confuse fermented soy (the healthy kind eaten by Asians) with the sterilizing, testosterone-lowering, feminizing poison that the U.S.A. government and big business want you to consume. As indicated by COUNTLESS studies, processed American soy is pure evil: sterilizing both men and women (a cause of America’s ever-plummeting birth rates and the reason couples need to pay fertility doctors tens of thousands of dollars just to have a baby, perhaps?) and pulverizing hormonal balance, especially testosterone production.

    Sources on the horrors of processed American soy:


    Please take care of yourself and avoid processed soy, and then please make sure that your family and close friends are given access to the information, too.

    1. Thank you for sharing this information. I have been reading about goitrogens and often what is stated is simply “soy”. I had FINALLY found a source that specified what kind of soy was a goitrogen and what kind was not – just along the lines you state here.

      Another example of what happens when one culture borrows from another culture without the full cultural context.

  5. I have to disagree, the “Scale of the Universe” IS “health related”! Its always great for the mental health to keep things in perspective. And, how can we separate our mental health from the rest of our health?

    I like the comments the creator chose to include. So far, my favorite is noting that while Rhode Island is the smallest US state, that all of the current world’s population could fit into it. Does that provide prospective on how much open land there is in the US (and elsewhere)? Does for me.

  6. “Baby’s got glutofemoral adipose tissue.” Oh man. I’d like to hear THAT song. Ha!

    As far as the rest of Melissa’s post, I’m delighted. I’m one of those small waisted women with heathy deposits of “glutofemoral” fat AND I’m 7 months pregnant with my first babe. N=1, or 2, or 3?

  7. Different foods taste different and better at certain times to draw you towards fresh benefits. Primal living turns you into a fine-tuned pedagogical eating machine!

  8. Speaking of Chris Kresser and glucose, I’ve been following Chris’s suggestions about glucose testing at home. I’ve turned up an interesting pattern in my readings and Chris’s explanations only cover it in part.

    Maybe someone here who has been doing home glucose monitoring while on a low carb diet can make sense of this pattern.

    Chris says that when on a low carb diet (carb grams consistently < 100 and definitely when they are consistently <50) that the fasting glucose measure (FBS) will be higher than what would be considered normal for anyone else.

    But, no worries if the FBS is in the 90's or 100's as long as the A1c is below 5.3 and the postprandial (after meals) measures are in range (1 hour, <140; 2 hours, <120; 3 hours back to pre-meal baseline).

    He explains how a higher FBS happens via induced insulin resistance and that FBS is the least predictive of risk factors for diabetes and cardio-vascular disease. OK, so far that makes sense to me.

    But, what my glucose readings are doing is turning the whole normal pattern for carb eaters on its head.

    Context: I am NOT diabetic. I am NOT pre-diabetic. At least, by ADA guidelines. But, I do not regard my recent blood sugar to be behaving normally, either – that's one of the reasons that I went primal. I was starting to get creeping elevations in my FSB and A1c and wanted to reverse that trend before I got into trouble.

    I haven't consumed anything even close to 100 grams of carbs in several weeks. Lately, I stay around 35 grams of carbs. So, here's a typical daily pattern for my blood sugar now:

    Immediately on waking, FBS 130. (Never seen my blood sugar that high before, btw.)

    I continue to fast, drinking water, and not exercising – while continuing to check glucose every hour.

    Second hour about 116.

    Third hour about 100.

    If I continue fasting, by hour four glucose starts to rise again – usually back to around 110.

    So, I assume that my pre-meal "baseline" is about 100.

    One hour after eating the first meal of the day, glucose about 110.

    Two hours after eating, glucose usually drops below 100 – maybe about 95.

    Basically, eating a meal results in lower blood sugar than the baseline within two hours. That's the reverse of what happens with "normal" carb based metabolism.

    So, overall, though the numbers run higher than I'd like to see, it seems to me that my blood sugar is pretty stable on a low carb diet. The numbers ~always~ stay below 140. And, I feel fine, sleep well, and so on.

    Will be interested to see what the next A1c results look like. Meanwhile, I don't think I need to worry, unless someone can point out a reason to be worried? I'm just curious about what the heck is happening from a physiological point of view. Anyone?

    1. P.S. I do have a couple of thoughts on what’s happening with my glucose readings.

      While I am doing well and had minimal trouble with carb flu in the beginning and so on, I am still in the adjustment/transition phase. I don’t know what’s “normal” for anyone else – but when a body has an established metabolic pathway for nearly 6 decades, changing that pathway will take some time. I would guess a few months for the full change.

      Meanwhile, I think that induced insulin resistance will undergo some adjustments as well – and I will eventually see lower FSB. I also think that my liver, although by most conventional standards pretty healthy, is undergoing a healing process as well. As the liver becomes healthier, the glucose output ( as well as lipid output) may change to reflect a healthier liver.

      Here’s hoping, anyway.

      1. Follow up:

        I posted my blood glucose results at Chris’s blog following posting here. He replied that what the pattern above sounded like was the “dawn effect” pattern, which does include BG readings lower after a meal than during fasting. Albeit, mine is an extreme version since the numbers were high. Because of the extreme readings he encouraged me to further investigate, which I am.

        While reading further last night I found a few other people mentioning similar reversals. I made notes about the things that they had tried and how it helped them adjust their diet, etc.

        One mention concerned cold sensitivity of glucose meter test strips. Seems the brand I use are particularly cold sensitive, which affects readings. My house is quite cold overnight so I kept it warm (65 degrees F) last night.

        This morning my FBG was 119 (versus 130 from before). The thought also occurs to me that sleeping in a cold house might have an effect on my body causing it to produce more glucose – or conversely to burn more fat thus further amplifying the “dawn effect” (if that’s possible). Geez, is there a physiology primer that just spells it all out for low carb eaters?

        I am also using control solution later today to test my meter’s accuracy. I plan to get a less cold sensitive meter since I don’t want to keep the house warm at night – unless I can figure out a way to keep the test strips warm.

  9. I used a study about fasting/caloric restriction and chemotherapy in a research paper last sememster! Great subject.