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September 13 2019

Weekly Link Love — Episode 46

By Mark Sisson
55 Comments

Research of the Week

One argument against free will has been debunked.

Researchers discover that “refined grains and meat” and “oil and salt” dietary patterns are bad.

Type 2 diabetes is reversible (if you get to it fast enough).

Archaeologists discover the earliest evidence for dairy consumption in the world—6000 years ago in Britain.

Ancient Roman Britons who ate less meat had a higher risk of mortality.

New Primal Blueprint Podcasts

Episode 373: Tony Gaskins, Jr: Host Elle Russ chats with Tony Gaskins, Jr, father, husband, and life coach to NBA stars.

Primal Health Coach Radio, Episode 25: Laura and Erin chat with Lisa Fraley, a holistic lawyer who helps health entrepreneurs protect their brands and businesses.

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.

Media, Schmedia

Chinese pork prices have soared, prompting the creation of “pork as luxurious jewelry” memes.

A new use for corn.

Interesting Blog Posts

The mineral content of vegetables has plummeted.

Social Notes

I’m a grandpa.

Everything Else

Timeline of psychedelics.

The importance of citizen researchers.

Stamina succeeds.

Popcorn is keeping movie theaters afloat.

Things I’m Up to and Interested In

News I enjoyed: Early humans in the Levant were skilled mammoth butchers wielding surgical-grade flint blades.

Study result I found very interesting: Eating 6 grams of medium chain triglycerides per day—the fatty acids found in coconut oil, about a teaspoon’s worth—improved muscle strength, muscle function, and capacity for daily functioning in elderly adults.

Which of these is more impressive: Vegan completes 100 mile race. Keto/carnivore defeats 100 mile world record.

Drawings I liked: The ones of somatic consciousness.

Question I’m Asking

The response to last week’s call for success stories has been fantastic, and humbling. Thank you all for sending those in. To anyone else thinking about immortalizing their Primal journey: can you send it in to mark@marksdailyapple.com? You never know who you’ll inspire….

Recipe Corner

Time Capsule

One year ago (Sep 8 – Sep 14)

Comment of the Week

“Thanks for posting ‘It’s later than you think’. Tragic story but such a great reminder to spend your time on what you value. Also – please never stop posting your Weekly Love Links! I look forward to them each week!”

– I won’t, Michelle.

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55 thoughts on “Weekly Link Love — Episode 46”

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  1. Free will: “An artificial-intelligence classifier allowed them to find at what point brain activity in the two conditions diverged. If Libet was right, that should have happened at 500 milliseconds before the movement. But the algorithm couldn’t tell any difference until about only 150 milliseconds before the movement, the time people reported making decisions in Libet’s original experiment.”

    Hmm, does that seem too perfect to you? It does to me. How long did that AI have to learn more about its task?

    My own theory is that we’ve overlooked that we told people to move their finger. That sets a state in the mind. So the status is, “when you want, move your finger.” That’s the premise. The 500 milliseconds could be the moment when the brain says “will I move my finger NOW or later?” And at 150 ms the brain has decided and does so. But it all takes place in the context of the premise.

    And now after all that boring stuff… a Geek-cool(R) Dilbert viewpoint on free will: https://dilbert.com/strip/2004-11-12

    1. In any event, free will went out the window when vitalism was rejected. Vitalism says that living matter has properties that non living matter does not.

  2. I had to explain to my new Primary Care that my diabetes is NOT in remission.

    Sure, my A1c has stayed between 5.1-5.4 since 2012, but if I eat a doughnut, you’ll see just how diabetic I still am…

    1. Good for you for knowing more than your Doc and for taking such good care of yourself.

    2. Remission might apply to a disease – but diabetes is a metabolic issue. You eat like a human should and the issue is resolved. Having a donut won’t spike your blood sugar like it would have when you were insulin resistant. I resolved my T2 diabetic condition in 2011. I continue to eat a primal diet. I resolved 12 health issues when I went primal.

    3. But if a break my arm and it heals, it’s no longer broken. Just because I take a hammer to it and break it again doesn’t mean my initial broken arm wasn’t resolved.

      We only have this attitude towards T2D. Why do we assume that anyone should be able to eat donuts without consequences at all?

      I find it a weird argument. Congratulations, you beat lung cancer. Yeah, but what if I start smoking again? If I was really cured I should be able to continue smoking without getting lung cancer again. Huh?

  3. Sorry to double dip, but I had a conversation with Benjamin Libet about the ‘free will’ implications of his studies. He agreed with the notion that the sending of potential signals was probably continuous: e.g. that the brain was signalling almost every potential action all the time. The act of free will was the selection of which signals were ‘sent’ in full.

    1. This reminds me of the study done showing that the smile precedes what we think is making us smile in the first place.

  4. Congratulations, Grandpa Mark! I took your Sunday missive to heart. I’m your age and have been a great-grandmother for almost 3 years. I’ve yet to meet Rowan (we live a great distance apart and neither her mother, Melonie, nor myself have funds for travel). She is the daughter of my grandson, from whom I have been estranged for 7 years including his mother, so Facebook is my connection to Rowan’s mother with photos and stories. Melonie and my grandson are no longer together. I am sad at this state of affairs, but my daughter’s father and I divorced when she was two and she raised my grandson as a single mom. While I was still in her life, her father lived in another state and purposefully made it difficult for me to see her out of spite. It’s a story I often wish I could re-write and is a common one in modern life. However, my family is rife with separations and distance between its members so, in a way, I suppose my daughter and I have carried on the “tradition”. Melonie has intentions to move closer to me in the Pacific Northwest in the next five years after she establishes her career in the computer industry. I fervently look forward to that day. In the meantime, we communicate via social media/text and I help her financially when I can. What’s wonderful is that she and I are both on the same page in so many ways; our progressive politics, our concerns for the planet, Paleo/Primal/Keto diets (she has the rare Ehlers-Danlos syndrome with which she struggles daily and I once battled anxiety & depression for half a century combined with obesity) and the injustices in our world. We communicate about these things often and I believe she is a vigorous, intelligent and wonderful role model for her daughter. And, yes, to see one’s grandchild and then great-grandchild is a sobering reminder that life truly does go on and I’m working to make sure there is a healthy, clean and livable planet available to them in the future. I raise my cup of coffee to you, Mark, in congratulations and gratitude that your books on Paleo and Keto have helped me improve my own health in a truly life-saving way so that I will have the energy, quality and, hopefully, quantity of life to watch Rowan reach maturity and make her own way in the world.

    1. If you don’t mind my asking, you said your daughter has Ehler Danlos syndrome. Could you tell me her symptoms she battles with daily?

  5. Congrats on being a grandfather

    A quote I like is “being a parent reminds you of your mortality – being a grandparent reminds you of your immortality.

  6. Hey, Mark! Welcome to you and Carrie to the best club in the world! Being a grandparent is the best!!!

    One of the best parts is watching your child become a parent. There is a new found respect from your kids as to why you did what you did while raising them. They see how the love for kids transcends everything and how your job was to care, nurture and protect them. Now they get to do the same.

    Enjoy every minute! I have 3 grandchildren and I am blessed to be living in the same city as 2 of them and only a 45-minute car ride from the other one. And the beat goes on…

  7. Hi Mark! Congratulations on becoming a grandpa! Awesome. I became a mother at 23 with my first daughter, and I was 26 with my second. Today they are 20 and 17, and honestly, I have been amazed every single day of their lives. Watching their bodies stretch and grow. How is it even possible that a 7-pound baby can get so big?? They joke with me that they will NEVER have kids, and I’ve joked back that I’d adopt my own… being a parent for me has been magical, heartbreaking at times and profoundly educational. I am 100% a better human for having had children. I can only imagine the joy of being a grandparent. Enjoy. X

  8. Re: “this kind of reflection without someone being born”. I know a few examples of people who had children, but died before their children had any children, as well as people who had children, but their children didn’t have any children, or their children’s children didn’t have any children. It seems strange that someone with three or four children could have half a dozen or more grandchildren who are either barren, or choose not to have any children at all.

    I’ve heard different theories including, gmo,s, and an inverse relationship between wealth accumulation/higher standard of living, and fewer children.

  9. age is a number. social dictates don’t rule our lives. social dictates remove our choices. who makes up all these rules about age and what one should or shouldn’t be doing. we all have choices and as long as our choices don’t impose another persons choice then screw social dictates. social dictates steal our lives and choices. i am so happy you can play frisbee. enjoy your life and screw social norms.

  10. Congratulations Mark!
    Her laughter will be music to your ears.
    Not grandparent yet but absolutely relish that all 4 of my kids teach me new ways of seeing things.
    I have never been more moved than when taking in the incredible beauty in out National Parks. You can’t go to the “Canyon” and not be moved in some way, or be caught endlessly staring at the Grand Tetons in awe,. Seeing Glacier NP and the never ending mountains and views, on the Going to the Un road. I’m humbled by the ocean waves crashing on the shore and to drive through Arches NP to experience the reality how time has shaped our earth. I consider it a privilege to experience being on this planet. To be human is awe and wonderment when changing to a Keto lifestyle. Experiencing that this is how I’m supposed to be. It was an amazingly easy transition to Keto. No hunger, lost interest in sugar, the inflammation from arthritis is minimal, and the fat layer is disappearing.
    I’m grateful for seeing an Outside Magazine article about your own transformation. I bought your PB book and it started me on my path.
    I look forward to Sunday’s With Sisson to inspire even more thought on the Whole Life experience.
    With much gratitude ?

  11. As the parent of a cancer survivor who can not have a pregnancy..the subject of being a grandparent is painful, as is the subject of parenting for she and her husband. That being said..we cherish all the children around us.

  12. Congrats, Grandpa Mark! One way for deeper reflection any time: go sit in a cemetery. In fact, when you have big life decisions to make, sit in a cemetery while you reflect on life’s choices. I just returned from visiting my husband’s grave. He’s been gone for two years now, and the cemetery always gives me a deeper perspective on things.

  13. Congratulations, gramps! I have become a grandfather, or “pappy” in my case, twice in the last six months. I. am. STOKED!
    Already, I have plans to get a kid seat for my bicycle,and I have a couple of strider type bikes picked out, and am making plans for two-wheeled adventures for my little crew.
    For me, making it to pappy-hood has been a goal for a number of years. My pop died untimely at the age of 57 of a heartattack. He had his first at 52. My kids were pretty young and didn’t get to enjoy them as long as they could have. That made up my mind for my own health path. Its how I found MDA as a matter of fact.
    My goal was to not only see my grand-kids born, but to be able to enjoy their company in an active way. Cripes, I want to see my great grandkids for that matter!
    Seeing those little bundles of joy (cliche? maybe…) does a heart good. They really bring an element of happiness to one’s life.
    I think until a person has grandchildren, its kind of hard to know the feelings a person can have.
    The Essence of Stoke.
    We are very close to our children so we see them frequently and sometimes I think I am going to pop!
    I guess, now that I think about it, my grandkids had a big hand in saving my life before they were even born!
    Again, congratulations, fellow grandfather!

  14. I am a great grandma. I have two grand children, one is still at college and my grand-daughter has three children. I go and see the great grand children as much as possible. I was still in my 60’s when the first came along – definitely didn’t feel older enough to be great grandma or Nanna as I have chosen to be called, still don’t in my mid 70’s.

  15. On how to force a deep reflection without a near death experience/birth/death etc, I find this works: imagine that you have no past and no future. You have no name, no history, no ‘identity’, yet you are still obviously alive. Ask yourself: ‘what is that ‘aliveness’ I feel?’, not conceptually, but what does it feel like qualitatively. I had a NDE when I was 10, and going deeply into that question reminds me a lot of the NDE.

  16. I remember the first time I held my daughter and looked into her eyes. I felt a searing energy that seemingly belonged in a sci-fi movie. It was the oddest thing I’ve ever felt. We’ve had our ups and downs as she’s grown, but hands down, getting married and starting a family is the best thing I’ve done in my life (and I’m no slouch in the accomplishments department). I’ll be interested in seeing how I feel as a grandparent, but my now 17 year old insists she’ll never have kids. I’m about six years behind you in age, so here’s hoping. ?

    1. I joked all the time I’d never have kids when I was 15. That was right before my sister had her first at 16 and also when I fell in love, and I had my first child at 18. I never saw myself as ever becoming a mother (I was quite a judgmental and somewhat mean person) but I can’t even begin to explain how much it changed me. I had my second at 20 and it changed me even more. Giving birth and breastfeeding both are such amazing experiences. It makes you realize how powerful a woman’s body is. And you develop love more deeply than you ever thought you could experience love. It’s unbelievable and impossible to put into words. I don’t know if I’d have ever taken my health seriously if I hadn’t had children. Caring about their health was the anchor I needed to care about my own. As they continue to grow there’s just so many experiences that make you realize how wonderful life is.

  17. Mark, yes there is a way. Just take that unconditional love you feel for your beautiful granddaughter and apply it to everyone else. This is how you grow from head (science) to heart (spiritual). And the combo is pure magnificent joy.

  18. Dear Mark,
    Is it me, or does it seem like vegan and pro-vegan propaganda has exploded in the media in the last decade? I hardly remember ever seeing vegan stories before about 2010, and these days, it seems like not a day goes by in which I neither hear such a story, nor see a headline for an anti-meat, pro-vegan story or article. 20 years ago, I didn’t even know what a vegan was, and I was happier that way. These days, it’s in your face, everywhere, and almost like a religious revival of sorts, where everyone feels the need to prosthelytize. -Jim

    1. OK, the “oil and salt pattern seems confused and inutile as it mixes industrial seed oils and natural fats. It would seem that much more unnatural fats are consumed rather than natural so the result is I thing a warning about unnatural fat consumption.

      Also the meat and refined gains would tend to take up most of the natural fat eaters.

  19. “Archaeologists discover the earliest evidence for dairy consumption in the world—6000 years ago in Britain.”

    How long have the Yakut and other Siberian tribes been drinking the milk of reindeer? If you’ve ever seen them milk one, it’s definitely an amusing sight.

    This article says “at least 8500 years (ago)” https://www.nature.com/articles/srep07104

    Also,

    Congrats grandpa! What an adorable little angel!

  20. Thanks for the wonderful email this morning and congratulations to you and your family on the new addition. I was touched by your words and they gave me extra focus for the things I need to do for my family. Good on you Mark!

  21. Congratulations on becoming a grandpa! My wife and I are very fortunate to have six now, with the three kids families, and they all live close by, two families in the same town as us.

    I find I have much more time (and money) to spend with these wonders. My experience when we were raising our own was the careers and making things work took too much of the time that is available. We love them all, but I think all grandparents take the opportunity to spend much more time with the grandkids.

  22. Being a grandparent has been all you described and most. At 61, I have 3 GKs and one more on the way. They are such miracles! I think parenting is different because if where you are at in life with work and trying to figure out how to keep little humans alive. Now, I relish every moment with them being fortunate enough to retire early and provide care for all 3!

  23. Thank you for posting the Psychedelic timeline. I can’t wait to see more research on the positive effects were seeing!

  24. Congrats on becoming a Grandpa! Enjoy those newborn cuddles!

  25. I became a grandparent for the first time four months ago. At the same time I was caring for my elderly mother who had dementia and had been diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Mom was able to see her great grandson a few times before she passed away on 7/1z Talk about an emotional roller coaster!!! I have questioned EVERYTHING; from parenting to caregiving: DID I DO ENOUGH?!? Now, I find myself “the matriarch “ of the family. I gave up my fitness regime to care for Mom when her health started to fail. My goal is to get into a fitness program and get control of my diet (I need to shed about 20 lbs). I want to be there and active for my grandson.

  26. This is exquisite , beautiful . The home births of my two children still remain the most amazing miracle of my life’s.
    I still recall that feeling ! And those eyes of wonder I was graced with still look st the world today as full of little miracles. Thank you for your musings today !

  27. Being a grandparent is THE best feeling in the world! Mine are five and two, and they are my world. I am more focused on my health and exercise. I’m 64 and I want to keep up with them. They think I can do anything…and for as long as I can, I will be!
    We moved to AZ from CA three years ago to be three doors down. Just last month my son-in-law received orders for MD. But, I had THE best years with them and plan on traveling to MD regularly.
    Soak it in, Mark. You and Carrie will be the best! They think there isn’t anything I can’t do, and I’m going to prove them right!
    Congratulations! You guys will rock!

  28. Congratulations on your new grandbaby! My two grandsons are at a scary age: 14 & 16!

  29. Comment on becoming grand pappy. Congrats. Some of us aren’t so judicious in looking forward to becoming a grandparent. Not all of our “kids” could handle that kinda responsibility…no second thought of falling back to their own parents to tow the line.
    What would being a grandparent mean to me? I know that I would have to extend the 25 years that I’ve put into being a first time parent to continue another 25 years to be a second time parent , since I failed the first time. Not so much failed, as in my own expectations weren’t theirs and it doesn’t look promising.
    What big occasion changed how you see life, the universe and everything? How about being on deaths door and realizing and asking that you will do anything for your children if you (higher power) just let me live?
    I’m stuck. Kids first, same as the day they were born. As much as I want a post-kid life – they come first – post kid life does not exist.

  30. Congratulations on the new addition to the family.

    From the email: “Your genes want to see themselves carried over to the next-next generation too.”

    Then my genes must be pissed! 😀 And they can pout all they want, it ain’t happening. I’ve known since I was 18 that I had absolutely no interest in pregnancy, childbirth, or parenthood and have not changed my mind one iota in the past 22 years.

    In contradiction to everyone here saying being a parent/grandparent is the best: Nope, if you have to have a younger relative in your life, being a childfree aunt is the best. My nephew will be 20 next week – how did that happen?! – and it’s been two decades of having all the fun and sending him back to his parents when I’m sick of him. 😉 Which I suppose is part of the fun of grandparenting, except I didn’t have to survive parenting first to get there. (Although in a lot of ways, I’ve been a secondary to tertiary parenting figure throughout most of his life.)

    My nephew is one of my favorite people. We share a lot of interests and I love that I’ve been able to be a big part of his life. But I and a lot of other people have never felt the supposed “genetic drive” to add to the population.

    1. This. I knew by the time I was 3 I didn’t want to put anyone else through what I did growing up.
      I’m lucky enough to have 4 I can ‘borrow’ as nieces/nephews, the oldest 3 are in their 20’s. Their friends now call me ‘auntie’ and come to me with questions they can’t/won’t ask their parents or blood relatives.
      Best of both worlds.

  31. Congratulations Mark! Happy for you. As to your request for “thoughts”… Grandparent? Hmmm Some of us did not have the opportunity to have children, let alone grandchildren… sure hoping my life is good for something other than that. If not why am I exercising and eating Primal etc… But seriously, I do find that people move forward in their lives and no matter what I am doing or accomplishing at work, home or competing with my dogs etc., I still maintain my friends and friendships. In my experience, and those of others I’ve asked, that does not seem to be the case with most “parents”. Us friends that do not have children get the “oh you wouldn’t understand, you don’t have children” comments. I’m sad sometimes that I didn’t have kids but I’m OK with it. There are plenty of people out there that may be quite at a loss and severely depressed because of it. I think we all leave something behind for the next generation, and frankly there are some people that should not be leaving anything behind, especially their DNA.

  32. Our deep satisfaction in the miraculous may be because of the rational. And vice versa; they seem to be two sides of the same coin. To trigger reckonings of what truly matters, in a way really helpful in putting together the rational & the miraculous, christians call that being born again. Jer. 29:13.

  33. Congrats fresh grandpa!! Time to do “Primal Kitchen Baby Foods”!!!

  34. Grandparents! I was very lucky to have grandparents ( mother’s side) local, and very close to my heart. That family grew up in the Depression. EVERY holiday had a house full of transplants to SoCal, families that moved here after WWII for work. It was a constant open house full of card games, stories, food & love. My grandma took care of everybody that needed a little help. Now that I’ve had 2 boys, and am able to live in the same town as my folks, they too have had a very special Grandparent bond together since birth. My dad, our beloved”Grandpa” just died on June 2nd. This was the first close to the heart death for my sons, now 25 & 19. It was devastating to them, to say the least. My point in writing today is to express how fortunate we were to have the Grandparents close, vacations together, all holidays together, etc… We couldn’t of raised these two without their help and love. This will be our first year without him, but being all together has always taken care of us. Just like my Grandparents, family, friends & love

  35. You are asking great questions. I would say read the Gospel of John. Explains some of those answers you are searching. There is life beyond the grave!

  36. Congratulations Mark! Good thinking and great questions on life, universe and everything. I believe what really matters in life is the condition of our soul. Being born again, i.e., spiritual birth in Christ was the greatest occasion in my life. John 3:16-17 ” For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. “

  37. Congratulations Mark and family. What wonderful news. And fantastic to hear it was a home birth. Beautiful baby ?

  38. My first Granddaughter is a little over 2. I’ve taken care of her 5 days a week since she was 4 months old. Plus I moved from TX Rio Grand Valley to Minneapolis to do this. It has been beyond joyful every day to watch her grow. She’s a mini of her Mom so I can almost relive my ‘Mom’ experience only this time I have extreme patience and all the time in the world to love on her. Every day, every minute is pure joy. It has changed my whole life becoming more loving, kind and compassionate to all people. I have been retired for 11 years and honestly loved every day of my 33 years as a high school business Ed teacher. But the put joy of holding my Granddaughter is beyond what I imagined.

  39. On Sunday Sept 15 you wrote about becoming a grandfather, and the reflection it prompted, and asked “Is there a way to “force” this kind of reflection without someone being born?”

    While births and deaths certainly force such reflection, any major life change (like losing a job, or a major shift in jobs, a relationship breakup etc) will also trigger such reflection.

    Making such reflection a more common occurrence is really the purpose of mindfulness and the practice of awareness. Just taking one minute to be aware of what I’m feeling, what’s happening in life, and how what’s happening is affecting me, physically and mentally, leads to deeper thinking and greater overall awareness.

    Every time we’re faced with a choice between doing one thing or another, going one place or another, helping someone or not helping them, we are presented with an opportunity for reflection and deeper awareness.

    It’s a habit that anyone can develop if they want to. It’s changed my life for the better, and I highly recommend it.

    Steve

  40. Mark, Jesus Christ being in my heart is the source of any reflection of how precious life is and causes me to reflect daily on what a gift it is. “I have come so that you may have life and have it abundantly” John 10:10. God wants only to restore and redeem us. We may fool ourselves into thinking otherwise but it’s exactly at those moments when we think we are in control that trouble or disruption occurs. The wise will be humbled, the fools will press on. Life is a gift. It can only be given. American culture treats life as just a random occurrence with no special meaning other than what we put into it because that has been what the scientific dogma had led us to believe. Contrary to what many think I can be a Christian and also believe in science. They are mutually inclusive. Can someone really believe that life is sacred and just a random collusion of soace, time, and matter?

  41. Mark:
    Excuse me I don’t have instagram or facebook and maybe this commentary is not in the proper site.
    But your words on grandfathership are very wise, profound and beautifully expressed.
    Thank you for let us share your insights.
    Congratulations

  42. Congratulations Mark!

    Very interesting what you write how such special occasions like birth make you reflect on what truly matters. This is definitely true. And it doesn’t even have to be birth or death. What has made me reflect recently was my daughter’s first day of school and my son’s 8th birthday. I realized how time flies and that my little kids aren’t that little anymore. In 10 years my son will be 18 and I know this time will pass so quickly. And so I made the promise to myself to enjoy and appreciate this time with the children even more.

    In my experience another way to trigger those reflections is to spend some time away from your regular routine, ideally without (too much) distraction from TV, smartphones and internet. After a couple of days you start viewing your life from a kind of distance and you come to realize if you’re heading in the right direction. If not, those moments are a great opportunity to initiate a change!

  43. Congratulations on becoming a grandfather. Our 7 grandchildren make our lives amazing. Enjoy every minute as with your own children they are grown before you know it!