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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March 22 2015

Weekend Link Love – Edition 340

By Mark Sisson
25 Comments

Weekend Link LoveI had a great time cooking, chatting about paleo tricks, and busting paleo myths on Camille’s Paleo Kitchen cooking show. Go check out the full episode, and wait for the paleogasm at the end.

The 2015 Diabetes Summit kicks off tomorrow. Register today to get free access to my presentation and dozens of others over the next week.

Research of the Week

8000 years ago at the dawn of agriculture, 17 women were reproduced for every one man. Man, the life of your average early farmer must have just been great!

Infants who received the probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus for the first six months of life went on to develop zero neuropsychiatric disorders by age 13. Among 13 year olds who didn’t get the probiotic as infants, 17.1% had developed ADHD or Asperger Syndrome.

Natural sleep cycles are preserved in a rural Brazilian community.

Outdoor play and exposure to bright natural light can lower the risk of myopia in kids by up to 60%.

New Primal Blueprint Podcasts

Episode 59: Dr. Kelly Starrett: Host Brad Kearns sits down with the supple leopard himself, Dr. Kelly Starrett, for a wide-ranging discussion about what it takes to become a healthy, well-rounded athlete, prevent common injuries, increase mobility and performance, and make the right training decisions. You’ll learn the five practices K-Starr prioritizes for anyone interested in improving their physical health, performance, and general wellness.

Each week, select Mark’s Daily Apple blog posts are prepared as Primal Blueprint Podcasts. Need to catch up on reading, but don’t have the time? Prefer to listen to articles while on the go? Check out the new blog post podcasts below, and subscribe to the Primal Blueprint Podcast here so you never miss an episode.

Interesting Blog Posts

The potential health effects of whisky polyphenols.

A dying neurosurgeon’s ruminations on time, meaning, joy, and life.

Media, Schmedia

Many dairy farmers are breaking the law on antibiotics usage in their animals.

Light manufacturer conducts survey concluding light at night not responsible for sleep disturbances.

Everything Else

An ongoing study is checking if the oft-reported survival benefits to pet ownership in older adults is related to changes in gut bacteria from dog kisses.

The British coconut oil boom.

The evolution of the anus.

Can maple syrup replace glucose gel for endurance athletes?

The Kitchen of the Unwanted Animal, an Amsterdam food truck and caterer, serves up pigeon, pony, parakeet, and other uncommon (and initially unwanted) animal meats.

Recipe Corner

Time Capsule

One year ago (Mar 23 – Mar 29)

Comment of the Week

When I first read the article, I read “You need a rat breakfast on a regular basis.” I wasn’t ready to go THAT primal.

– Oh, The Definitive Guide to Road Kill, Vermin, Rats, and Other Varmints is coming soon.

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25 thoughts on “Weekend Link Love – Edition 340”

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  1. Will someone please do a post on this MIND diet I keep reading about? 3 servings of whole grains and beans every other day helps prevent Alzheimers? Given what I know, that just doesn’t make any sense on any level. Yet I haven’t seen a single mention of it here or in the forums.

    1. I don’t know what diet you are speaking of but….. My mom is in the final stages of dementia and in our experience with her less grains (my dad thinks that oatmeal is good for every meal) and more fats like butter, bacon grease, coconut oil gives her more clarity than any drugs or anything else.

      My dad would like to have her eat the grains since he doesn’t know how to make good real food for her. She has a person who is funded by her insurance to come and make sure she eats real food, thankfully.

      It’s not easy to get her to eat things that are good for her, she’d eat candy all day if she could. They have been so blinded by CW that they’ve eaten low fat and high carb for years. Most of the time she does ok if the food has enough seasoning and flavor.

      1. I used to care for a lady with dementia here in my neighborhood (yes, I seem to live in god’s waiting room). I did an N=1 experiment on her when I went over to take her breakfast and to make sure she took the correct pills on the correct day, and to make sure she ate at least one meal a day. Knowing the day of the week is VITAL when you’re on medications with their own schedule, and some pills skipped a day or two. She very easily could take the wrong pills on the wrong day, and had been until I stepped in and offered to go over each morning to help her out.

        She used to tell me stories over breakfast as we both ate, and I noticed something: if I fed her Paleo-style foods, she tended to repeat herself a lot less often, and seemed more alert. On days where I fed her conventionally (I cannot eat any of it due to food allergies), she’d go for about 10 minutes before she started repeating herself, and was foggy and forgetful for the rest of the day. Yes, her house was replete with sweets, boxed cereals, and the like, and it didn’t help that her husband was a chocoholic.

        I looked forward to the Paleo-style breakfasts we both shared–we shared a meal over the breakfast table, and she (with a clear head) regaled me with tales of her kids, her husband, her childhood, our neighborhood and town 40 years ago, her prom date, etc., and then her daughter decided one day that it was time for her to go into an assisted living facility.

        I still miss ol’ Beulah to this day, even though she’s alive and kicking (still has her own teeth) in a different city near her daughter.

  2. Why would life be great for early farmers? The sex ratio might not mean that each man got 17 women to slave for him in the home, in the fields, and in his bed. It might mean that women formed coalitions, took ownership of the land, and shared men for stud and other slave purposes. They might have had rich and fulfilling sex without men. Women are very capable people who can farm very well – as shown by subsistence level societies and the high productivity of women who farmed while their men were off at the wars. It’s a very patriarchal and unbecoming attitude to think that men have some divine or biological mandate to own women.

    1. Or it’s just a realistic and humorous commentary on what the state of civilization actually was, not what you wish it was. Women could have done those things, sure. But they didn’t. For whatever reason, it was a male-led society. Mark didn’t write anything patriarchal (which is fast becoming the most over- and misused word of this decade.) He made a small commentary on the situation and then moved. You were the one who read it as demeaning to every woman who has ever done anything without a man ever in the history of the world.

      1. Did neither of you read the link? It implied that organized agriculture coevolved with patriarchy and hierarchy, something which anthropology quite clearly indicates. Most men were deprived of reproductive opportunities, and women could be utilized by the males higher up in the hierarchy.

        Of course Mark’s was a problematic comment as well.

  3. The 17:1 ratio story reminds of:

    Homer: Chop, chop, dig, dig, chop, chop, dig, dig, chop, chop, dig,dig …
    Marge: You know, Homey, there’s so much more two wives could do for you …
    Homer: I hear digging, but I don’t hear chopping!

  4. Had to laugh over the article regarding research of the anus. Most of us give zero thought to that portion of the anatomy unless it malfunctions.

  5. “Man, the life of your average early farmer must have just been great!”

    Hmm, actually not so great. According to the research, your average farmer just didn’t get any.

  6. Enjoyed the Paleo Kitchen cooking show with you and Camille! Would be great to get more shows like that with Paleo/primal recipes.

  7. Mark, I don’t think you read that first early farmer link carefully. What that’s saying is that the successful early male farmer had tremendous reproductive success. The ratio of men to women was fairly constant however, so that means that most men had no reproductive success whatsoever…

  8. Ref: the article on whiskey polyphenols – There is a reason the Celts named it whiskey (Gallic: usquebaugh) “water of life”!

  9. Iy seems some people could really do with developing a sense of humour… ‘It might mean that women formed coalitions, took ownership of the land, and shared men for stud and other slave purposes’ said someone above. Seems win win to me…;-)

  10. Perhaps since agriculture is so labor intensive most men became slaves and thus did not have a chance to reproduce while women were enslaved in different ways.

  11. Men who think that 17:1 ratio is great forget that the other 16 or so men had no reproductive success whatsoever…

  12. That’s right JK and SusU, it was very unsuccessful for the other 16 males to not reproduce. And even now , “In more recent history, as a global average, about four or five women reproduced for every one man,” it seems really unbalanced. I can guess at several modern day groups who aren’t successful at having children but it doesn’t mean they don’t have sex. Still it does seem odd when it’s described statistically like that.

  13. The life of the average farmer was just bad – not great, since no reproduction must have meant no sex, since effective birth control wasn’t available back then.

    Societies must have been very non-egalitarian for both men and women, since just a small elite of men got the chance to pass on their genes. There could be several reasons for this imbalance, but the most likely I could think of is this: Men and women could have been enslaved by a small elite of men who where the owners of the land. They made the average farmer work for them and forced himslef upon the women under his control.

    Bad scenario but looking at history – agricultural societies were more often non-egalitarian than egalitarian. Agriculture promotes the fighting over land, since land owning is necessary for successful agriculture. You can only pass on wealth to your children, if you own a lot of land or else it will always be subsistence agriculture, based on just survival not accumulating wealth. That means a system is promoted where you will try to accumulate a lot of land and you will seek to control human labor in order to produce a lot of crops so you can trade them.

    In such a scenario, a ration 17:1 makes sense.

    1. Spot on, just what I was thinking. And it offers a great insight into the world we now live in (where not much has changed, really).

  14. Let me know if you want a presenter for the rat a day meal plan or other wild game strategies!

  15. I was thinking about men reproducing less than women, and I had a funny thought. By Fisher’s principle, wouldn’t this imbalance in reproduction select for women, since women were more likely to have reproductive success? The period may not have lasted long enough for evolution to kick in, but how ironic would it be if we started producing more and more females, with only 1 in 17 children being born male?

    Seems unlikely the imbalance would last long enough for that to happen, but an interesting hypothetical nonetheless.

  16. Of course a study of self-reported sleep disruptions would find that light is not the problem. Most people are unaware of bright and/or blue light exposure delaying melatonin production. Even being aware of the problem, I can’t tell it’s happening! People aren’t going to report light as something disrupting their sleep if they are unaware of the effect. Plenty of studies have shown that light from phones disrupts sleep at a subconscious level. People only partially waking and going back to sleep, etc. Obviously the light manufacturer conducting the study completely ignored or was unaware of this information.

  17. I ate some raw squirrel recently for lunch, or a snack rather since I wasn’t even hungry. It looked like it had fallen out of a tree and died soon before I got there since rigor mortis had barely begun.