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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Category: Weight Loss

Dear Mark: Protein Efficiency in Seniors, Earned Carbs, Hardgainer with Limited Time

For this week’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering three questions from readers. First, is the reduced protein efficiency in older adults due to inactivity, or is it something inherent to the aging process, or both? Second, how does a person know if they’ve actually “earned” any carbs? Does everyone on a keto diet earn carbs by virtue of exercising, or is there more to it? And finally, how can a hardgainer with a packed schedule all week long and limited gym time maintain what little muscle mass he’s managed to gain?

Let’s find out:

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The Curious Phenomenon of “Keto Crotch”

I have a confession to make: I, Mark Sisson, suffer from keto crotch.

It’s embarrassing, really. I thought maybe it was just the change in climate moving from Malibu to Miami—the humidity, the heat, the fact that I’m paddling and swimming more often now. There’s a whole lot of moisture down there. Perpetual steaminess.

But then I met up with my writing partner and good pal Brad Kearns, who’s been working with me on my upcoming book. Brad lives in Northern California, which is far from hot or humid right now. He’s also a staunch keto guy most of the time, and, well, let’s just say I could smell him before I could see him. We met up at a coffee shop and cleared out everyone in a fifteen foot radius. We sampled a new exogenous ketone product he’s been trying and not one, not two, but three separate individuals approached to inquire if we were salmon fishermen.

Okay, let’s get serious. (And, yes—to address some reader confusion there—the above is pure satire.) Does “keto crotch” really exist? And, if it does, what can you do to prevent it?

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Dear Mark: Fasting, Training, and Growth Hormone; Wear and Tear on the Arteries

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering a couple of questions from the comment sections of the last couple weeks. First, it’s been established that fasting and exercise both raise growth hormone. What about fasted exercise—does that have an even stronger effect? And what about continuing to fast after your fasted workout? Then, I discuss the inevitability (or not) of wear and tear on the arteries from blood flow-induced shear stress. Is shear stress “bad,” or do certain factors make it worse?

Let’s dig in.

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How to Accelerate Weight Loss with Fasting

Folks, you know I’m a believer in intermittent fasting for longevity, autophagy, mental clarity, fitness performance, metabolic health, and more. So, when I heard that Dr. Jason Fung, a world expert on fasting, and his team at Pique Tea were putting together a Fasting Tea Challenge this month, I wanted to know more. And I think you will, too. You can check out the details and sign up here. (There’s more info and the sign-up link at the bottom of post, too.)

The Challenge looks to be a great experience for anyone interested in intermittent fasting—including those trying it for the first time and those who have done it before but want to make it more of a regular tool in their healthy lifestyle routine. I’m also thrilled that Dr. Jason Fung has stopped by the blog today to share a bit about fasting for weight loss. Enjoy—and be sure to share any questions you have on the comment board. 

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Are All Calories the Same?

As you and millions of other people embark on new dietary journeys, you’re going to hear a ton about calories.

“Calorie counting is everything.”

“If you aren’t counting calories, you won’t lose weight.”

“Just eat less calories than you expend.” For one, it’s “fewer.” Two, that’s not the whole picture.

These statements aren’t wrong exactly, but they offer an overly simplistic picture of the relationship between weight loss and calories. They ignore context. And context is everything, especially when you’re talking about calories and weight loss.

Most people (even many scientists) believe that the body composition challenge is a relatively simple equation: to lose weight you must reduce calories (either eat less or burn more), to gain weight you must add calories (eat more or burn less), and to maintain weight you keep calories constant (eat and burn identical amounts). Calories in over calories out.

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How to Restart Keto

Last month, I gave a heads up about what I’m calling the Keto Kickoff—a quick and comprehensive 7-day dive into the ketogenic diet, a pure distillation of the lessons contained in The Keto Reset Diet book. That starts next Monday (sign-up closes Sunday night 1/6/19), and it assumes, but does not require, an audience without any formal experience in the ketogenic diet.

What about a similar-but-different-enough population—those who have tried keto, stopped for any number of reasons, and want back on the wagon? Should those looking to restart keto do or know anything different?

First and foremost, the basics still apply. Anyone looking to restart keto should pay attention to all the stuff I’ve covered in previous posts and books and will be covering in the Keto Kickoff email series (so sign up today!). Going keto is going keto.

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