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Sunday, May 22, 2011

How do you want to spend your last years?

In a diaper and a wheelchair? Or tending to your animals, garden and loved ones—fully engaged and functional? You DO have a choice.

Too many are laboring under the illuision that bad health events and conditions are just part of aging. Or that bad health 'things' (like heart attacks and cancer) jump out and get certain people, no predicting who or when.

WRONG! Your health and your aging is entirely under your control. You cause it. You can make it get better or get worse. All right, there probably are a few exceptions—but trust me, you’re not it! Actually bad health stuff is extremely predictable!

Some are dealt a better hand, true. But the inalienable, inherent and rock bottom thing about biology is that it is self regulating, self healing—even in the face of horrendous biological damage. You just have to find out how!

If you think you are a victim of your biology, you’re probably not going to like what I say in this blog because I do NOT think you are a victim. You can take control, learn about how your body actually works, stop doing the things that cause damage, quit believing everything that’s force fed to you by media and the medical industrial complex and watch your body be strong, healthy, vigorous and well. On the other hand, if you have issues at this point, let me remind you that you might be unthinkingly enjoying a payoff for hanging on to those issues.

I can say this because I’m looking at my own. I recognize that my arthritis pays off big sometimes. I don’t have to walk miles in strange airports, risk missing a connecting flight, because I get a wheelchair assist. Am I willing to give up that perk if my joints are no longer an issue?

What do you have (the biggies or the little niggling stuff) that gets you any of the following payoffs:
  • sympathy
  • accommodation
  • time off
  • attention
  • excused from things 
It’s uncomfortable to look at those and own any—or maybe all. It takes some introspection and a willingness to take responsibility. When I did, I found a sense of control and confidence I had given up—to the pain, the help, the sympathy. Hey, it’s my responsibility, and it’s my life! What am I (you) going to do with it!

I had a conversation recently with a lady who has had cancer. She plainly stated she does not want to delve into all this health stuff. “It’s too confusing,” she said. “One year they tell us one thing, the next it’s proven wrong and something else is in vogue.”

It depends on who you’re listening to. Main stream media, medicine and those who want your money have an agenda. There are now, however, thousands of blogs, websites, alternatives to those with an agenda. With the availability of studies online, you can actually look at the study set-up and data. If evaluating such things isn’t in your skill set, at least look for the minority reports that are available—because they’re out there. If the internet has done nothing else, it’s allowed the questioning of presumed authorities and conflicts of interest.

So are you a sheep with the conventional wisdom piped directly into your belief system, or are you trying to figure out which people and groups have been lying to you for most of your life? Your life depends on it. Whether you end up in that diaper and wheelchair or something far, far better.

Last time I talked about the lie I was told about how important breakfast is. Breakfast makes me hungrier for the rest of the day. That might not be true for everyone, but it certainly is for me. See this youtube video for an explanation:

Want some help figuring out what's real in the health world?  Stay turned, tell your loved one, too and see also



Monday, May 16, 2011

The Breakfast Myth

One of my main concerns and a focus in this health/fitness/wellness/aging stuff is how to get back to the body shape of youth when we are no longer youthful. I start with the assumption it's possible. I've done it before. I want to do it again.

If you've been following what I've researched and written about you know that I've been poking holes in the conventional wisdom--those lies we've been told by the mins-informed, the un-informed and the monied interests who want our cash not our health.

For the last many months I've been trying many weight loss strategies, testing the theories. In my ebook (“Minding the Middle Aged Middle: Losing weight - fact and fantasy of the middle aged middle") I concluded that both the carbohydrate/insulin theory and the semi-starvation theory have merit. Either can be ignored only at the peril of out waist measurment.

BUT! Neither is particularly easy. While over a period of months, I managed to apply a low glycemic index/load to my carbohydrate intake, I, and my friends and clients were finding the semi-starvation thing hideously unappealing and notoriously unworkable. Evenings were fraught with cravings for all the wrong stuff. A whole day of low calorie, low glycemic load smart food intake can be undone in the last hour or so before sleep when we want a pound of almonds or chocolate or something not only not healthy, but also wrecking havock with insulin and calories.

Examining assumptions is what I do well so I'm examining assumptions again. One of the biggest--that I had NOT examined before--is that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Who said so and where's the evidence. Also, it's in keeping with my firm belief that we ought to look to prehistory to see what we're suited for in diet and exercise to re-examine breakfast. Besides, I've known since I was a teenager, at least, that I don't particularly like breakfast first thing in the morning.

Also, new information has come my way that intermittant fasting is good for us (another post for details). So I'll just try this thing by fasting through breakfast and eat two good meals starting after noon when I'm good and hungry. That gets me the benefits of lower calories (cutting by at least 1/3) and the benefits of the intermittant fasting, too.

Our hunter/gatherer ancestors didn't wake up to cornflakes or eggs and bacon. They woke up and had to get going to find food. Hmmm. Maybe breakfast isn't the most important meal of the day like we were told.

Turns out the breakfast myth began about the time of the rise of Kellogg's cereals. A double whammy. Eating when maybe we should be moving around instead, and all those cereal grains (high glycemic load which triggers insulin--the hormone of hunger). If I eat breakfast, I am hungrier all day. Good reason for that is the insulin released by eating breakfast.
I knew that in high school. Why did I ignore my own body's wisdom for 50 years?

But the most important thing for anyone (like me) who wants to do calorie restriction, might be the fact that I can stand being hungry in the early part of the day, but not at night. Yes, I get pretty hungry waiting till noon or 1 PM or later. But it's manageable. And then I eat all I want for two meals of protein, vegetables and a little fruit. All those cravings I was experiencing--gone!

Voilla! I am hereby reporting that trying this for something over a week now I am down 8 pounds. WHAT?? After months and months of being stuck, in one week with this strategy I am having success--and huge success! I am blown away!!!

I will report again. I won't even suggest you try it, but I can tell you I'm sticking to it! Maybe the breakfast myth is just another in the long line of flat out crap we've been told and sold!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Two Connected Ideas

Two articles have appeared lately that I would recommend to you who care about optimal health and wellness. They are somewhat related, thus I include them here.

The first here tells us that alcohol is carcinogenic. Actually, this is not new information. Scientists have known for many years (perhaps decades) that more alcohol equals more cancer, with some being more prevalent. This is in part a function of how alcohol is metabolized. Short article, take a look!

The second article found here is from the NT Times magazine. It's by Gary Taubes, one of my favorite writers about health and wellness issues. He is the author of "Good Calories, Bad Calories" (mainly a debunking of the cholesterol myth) I have recommended before. He has a new book out called "Why We Get Fat" that's on my list to read.

This article is titled "Is Sugar Toxic". It explains how fructose is metabolized precisely like alcohol, and the ramifications of sugar consumption (table sugar being 50% fructose and HFCS being 55% fructose) and the evidence to back up this toxicity.

It's long, detailed and very good. Because reading it online is rather tedious (going to nine separate webpages) I have put it all in a document for ease of reading. If you want the document, email me and I'll send it.

I talk a lot about inflammation and how it's the beginning of disease processes. The above are two of the things that cause inflammation. Humans are not designed to eat sugar and alcohol. Can we handle an occassional splurge? Yes. But when either or both are combined with multiple high glycemic load foods, every meal, every day, the body is overwhelmed. At what point? No one knows! Is it one piece of bread a day? Is it one beer or one glass of wine with dinner? Is it noodles every night or a bender once a month? No one knows. But it's clear hat these substances are toxic somewhere along the continuum. I recommend the two articles!