7Jan

Statins are a Symbol

00:0000:00

What do I mean by saying that statins are a symbol?  Well, I mean that the widespread, in fact almost universal prescribing of such a drug is symbolic of what has happened to modern medicine. Medications are routinely prescribed to patients, whether or not that medication will actually help the person or not!

 

Let’s look at the case of statins: if you are a man of any age without existing heart disease, statins won’t extend your life span.  And if you are over the age of 80, with or without heart disease, there is no benefit to be had from a statin.  In addition, although the chances of you benefiting from a statin are quite slight, the chances of bad side effects are quite great.  10% of statin users are inflicted with muscle damage and pain, and there is also risk of kidney damage as the breakdown of muscle tissue overloads the kidneys with deteriorated muscle tissue in a condition known as rhabdomyolysis.

 

Personally, I know how important muscle tissue is for health, particularly as a person ages.  When you see older people hunched over, barely able to walk or even get up out of a chair, much less off of the ground or a floor- this is because of sarcopenia, which is just a simple term for muscle wasting as people age.  But I am here to tell you that muscle wasting is not only something to avoid at all costs, but you certainly don’t want to cause it to happen faster by taking a statin!

 

For women, especially women over the age of 60- statins have not been shown to be of any benefit whatsoever.  In fact, a higher cholesterol level amounts older women seems to be very protective in terms of overall longevity, rather than the reverse.  Also, for women, a 9% increased risk for diabetes is another side effect of statins.  Men also get an increased risk of diabetes, but more in the area of 6%. 

 

While there are some rare instances when a statin is appropriate, the key word there is rare.  For the vast majority of us, the risks are not worth the small advantage- especially in light of the fact that, while statins do lower the “magical” cholesterol numbers- this works out into no longer life expectancy.  So, really, what is the point?

 

And that is why I think that statins themselves are a symbol- a symbol of the vast overuse of medications, for pretty much everyone, all the time.  Medications that just treat symptoms (like a high number on the cholesterol chart), but deliver no increases in health or wellness.  Depression medications, stomach acid reducing meds, drugs for this, drugs for that- overall, I would estimate that over 95% are either totally unneeded and very expensive (hence big pharma’s vested interest in having a lot be sold).  Also- usually the side effects are worse than the symptoms of the disease they are supposed to treat.

 

In light of all of this, I am starting to think that the traditional Rod of Asclepius, which is a staff surrounded by  a twisting serpent, is starting to really be a good representation of modern medicine today.  I don’t mean to be harsh, but really, I often see the big medical clinics, along with their legions of drug peddlers as more of an adversary than as a wise counselor.

 

27Dec

How To Heal Thyself

00:0000:00

Once you get to a certain age, and for most that seems to be the early 50’s or so, if you have lived a Standard American Diet and lifestyle as most do- you will start to fall apart!  You will have aches and pains; often in the form of migraine headaches, acid reflux, IBD, and increasingly pain in the joints and spine.

 

To solve this, it is definitely NOT a matter of which heavy duty drugs to take, or even of going to a good chiropractor to get your back cracked or adjusted.  And surgeries and NSAID drugs like ibuprofen, Tylenol, aspirin and the like are also NOT the answer.  All of these commonplace strategies are short term stopgaps at best, and all arrive at the place of steadily worsening health and well-being rather than healing and wellness.

 

First off- any drug- any drug will wreak havoc on your gut lining, and intensify your future pain and suffering.  Guaranteed!  You need a long term strategy, something you do each and every day that will definitely fine you vastly improved in every way, and with a truly healthy and happy body and mind.

 

Now, some chiropractors are great- they guide you into a paleo, ancestral lifestyle just as I attempt to do with good advice and counsel.  Clean up your diet, cut out the bread and sugar, exercise regularly, meditate and walk barefoot, eat real, God-made foods rather than processed hyper-palatable crap.  Then, they usually will adjust your back as well, and you will think all is well.  And it may be, for a little while…

 

The thing is, chiropractic care is a transitory, stop-gap type of treatment that is very temporary, and helps you feel better after having abused your body with the wrong kind of exercise (heavy weights), or no exercise (poor posture, deteriorating muscle tone), bad stress, and a lack of walking outdoors in nature.   Poor sleep is also contributory to all of this. 

 

Just as surgery and drugs are not a long term answer, neither are chiropractic adjustments on a regular basis.  For one, they are quite expensive, not to mention unnatural!  How many ancient humans had their backs adjusted on a regular basis?  They didn’t need them to be adjusted, because they adjusted them themselves on a daily basis, just as now you will!  You just need to adopt a few simple habits of health, and you will self-adjust yourself on a daily basis, and your gut will gradually heal, rendering your body to be as healthy as it can be.

 

There are two things I’d like you to add into your daily regimen.  Simple stretching, primarily on a mat on the floor, some simple exercises mixed in with the stretching, and a warm cup of salted bone broth to sip while you work.  Really- this little pleasurable addition to your morning routine can completely revamp your health, your joints, and eliminate your aches and pains permanently.

 

When you awaken, (making sure that you get a good 8 hours of sleep at least, in a completely dark room), after visiting the bathroom, go into your kitchen and pour a mug of bone broth.  Sprinkle in some good Redmond’s sea salt, and go into your living room, where you keep your television.  Unroll your yoga mat, and start in on some gently stretches.  Do the Asian squat to start, holding a deep squat for as long as it seems comfortable as you watch whatever you have chosen.  Breathe deeply and relax- this time is yours, and over time it will become more and more enjoyable, something to look forward to each morning!

 

Now, I’m not going to tell you what stretches or exercises to do here, this is not the place.  If you are in pain, anything you do that addresses your own various pains and tightness is the right thing to do, for you.  I will say that I always make sure to lie flat on my back, and stretch out as far as I can, first right leg and right arm, and then right leg and left arm.  I also cross my right knee over my body to the left and hold, and my left knee to the right and hold.  I intersperse other exercises in a way that seems to flow naturally for me, slowly stretching my whole body gently, to and fro, until I have methodically adjusted my spine and other joints to where they feel alive, the synovial fluid flowing like warm oil in a car engine. 

 

It’s definitely not rocket science, you just stretch intuitively, like an animal stretches when it wakes up, particularly like a cat!  In fact, sometimes one of my cats joins me in my morning stretches, and what we do is quite similar, really, accounting for our different body structures. 

 

And just sip away as you do, pausing to drink that bone broth as you go- there is definitely no rush!  I like to allow a good hour for my morning exercise/stretches/adjustments, but that is because I also include pushups, and rebounding, along with various resistant exercises like isometrics with a strap, virtual and self resisted exercise, as well as sit-ups and others.  Check out my ebook Perfectly Paleo Exercise for a detailed look at these; also, I plan to put together a course on exercise this new year on Udemy.com where I can demonstrate just what I’m talking about in great detail. 

 

But for now, if you are in pain, and only want to get better- just set aside a good 1/2 hour each morning.  Get up early enough to make it happen, by going to bed early enough the night before.  Just the wonderful sleep you will be getting is very healing in and of itself!  And get in a good supply of bone broth.  Nowadays, a good quality, organic bone broth made from pastured animals is available in boxes and jars at most groceries for a reasonable price- not to mention, you can always make your own as I do, with good quality bones and a crock pot. 

 

But the point, just as with the gently stretching regimen, is to do it every day.  Make health a habit!  After a while, if you miss a day, it’s not big deal at all- but at first, while you are making it a lifelong habit- try not to miss!  These two small additions to your life, bone broth and stretching daily, can change your health dramatically overall!  Your joints and gut lining can definitely rebuild, and thrive again.  The time can even be quite short to do so- if you do it daily.

 

And then, after 30 days or so- why, you’ll feel so good, you’ll be like me- you will go out after 30 minutes to the kitchen, and get yourself a cup of coffee laced with coconut oil.  Back in the living room, you’ll push ‘play’ again on the show that your were watching as you stretched, and you’ll start in on your pushups and other exercises.  This is phase two exercise, where you not only have your health back, you want to vastly improve it via strength training. And, trust me- it is intoxicating!

16Dec

Becoming a Ketogenic Diesel

00:0000:00

OK, I mentioned last podcast that I had gotten a new tractor!  For anyone with an  acreage, anyone that has a small woods, a big lawn, and lots and lots of tasks that need to be performed on a regular basis- why then, you know just how important a tractor is to you. 

 

My old tractor was pretty darn good, since I had finally upgraded from a gas powered lawn tractor to a compact utility tractor.  This is a huge distinction, since a gas powered tractor such as that, that the vast majority of large property owners have, is much, much less useful, strong, and overall powerful than a real, CUT- that is, a Compact Utility Tractor!  A CUT has a far bigger, heavier frame, much larger tires, a 3 point hitch for all sorts of useful implements, and most importantly of all- it has a diesel engine. 

 

A diesel engine has much more torque, or useful pulling and other sorts of power, than a gas engine.  My little John Deere 650, still outside with the back blade and chains on for snow, is still running strong.  But, it only has 15 hp, which is pretty powerful when in the form of a diesel!  My new Kubota (both these machines are built in Japan, despite the green paint on the John Deere), has more than twice that much hp, is quite a bit larger, frame size wise, and the tires are huge in comparison.  It’s also much newer, orange (that’ll take some getting used to!), and- it has a big loader bucket on the front!

 

I’ve already experimented with the bucket, knocking over dead trees with it, pulling down big tree-sized branches that my old tractor couldn’t budge, and carrying firewood.  I spend time each day, walking my land and thinking about jobs I’ll do with it come spring in my woods.  Moving brush piles with the pallet loader, hauling firewood into orderly piles, and perhaps digging a small pond.  It is a huge boon to have that much useful power at my disposal, and doing various tasks will be a pure joy!

 

Now, wouldn’t you like to trade in your old body, that old gas or carbohydrate burning lawn tractor body that burns oil in the form aches and pains, and just doesn’t have that much useful power anymore?  Well, you can- just trade yourself in, by remaking yourself into a diesel compact utility tractor- a CUT! 

 

First, you need to start fueling yourself like a diesel human.  You need to switch from running on glucose from carbs and sugars, and move into a ketogenic sort of diet.  This means low carbs, very little sugars, and plenty of protein and fats!  It will be a change, but within a few weeks your body can transform itself into a diesel machine, running on ketones rather than glucose.  You will rarely be hungry, and you will begin running on your stored body fat preferentially over the last bagel or piece of bread you just ate.  Your energy will quickly become unlimited, just like my tractor!

 

While you do this, I also want you to hang up your stupid running shoes, and start walking around barefoot instead.  On the grass in spring and summer and fall, or just rebounding barefoot in your living room as I did this morning.  Soon, you will be the equivalent of human 4 wheel drive, with healthy feet that are never plagued with plantar fasciitis or the many other painful foot ailments those who constantly wear shoes are plagued with. 

 

Lastly, I want you to begin strengthening your very frame, by getting a long fabric loading or moving strap with which you can perform isometrics.  You can literally give your entire body a complete muscle, tendon, and ligament strengthening workout in 10 minutes using isometrics with such a simple strap!  Unlike weights, which only strengthen the musculature, leaving the tendons and ligaments largely unaffected and prone to pulls, tears, and strains, isometrics strengthen all of you.  Muscles, ligaments, tendons, and bones! 

 

I like to take the strap, (which ironically is orange, just like my Kubota!), and stand on it, grasping with one hand at shoulder height.  I press upwards in a military press for about 5 seconds for 90% of max effort or so, and then relax.  Repeat, for a little longer, maybe 6 seconds, and then a third time for 7 seconds.  Then, sliding my hands up to about half way over my head, I repeat the three steps.  Next, I almost max out my “lift”, and press again almost at arm’s length for three times.

 

Now you get the idea!  Do the same thing on the other arm for military presses.  Then, do curls the same way, from the bottom most position holding the strap, halfway up, and almost to the top.  Both arms, 3 hard efforts at each of three positions of the lift.

 

Next, do a pushup isometric- trap the strap around your back, and holding the straps right in front of your chest, push!  The same drill, bottom of pushup, halfway up, and almost all the way up.  Then, do bent rows the same drill. 

 

Finish up with deadlifts, standing on the strap and lifting upwards quite hard with both hands grasping the strap- first low, then mid-point- then almost to the top!  Congratulations: you have done one session of strengthening your body into a CUT, a diesel tractor with a really strong, powerful, resilient and injury resistant frame. 

 

Stick with your new ketogenic type of diet, which is quite similar to a paleo diet if (hopefully) you’ve been following that.  But, when just starting out, thinking of it as a KETO diet makes it somewhat simpler to understand, and it will also act quite quickly.  Weight to lose will leave quickly, and muscle and frame strengthening will also occur quickly as well, with the change of diet and addition of isometrics! 

 

Other exercises, including work on the gymnastic rings, sit-ups and pushups, along with rebounding and barefoot sprinting, will literally transform you, from the weak little lawn mower you used to be, rusting and bent, with tiny wheels that mostly just spin on the grass when trying to pull, to a strong, tough, almost unbreakable diesel Tractor/Human that will go through life effortlessly, free of aches and pains, and as someone who will enjoy physical tasks rather than dreading them! 

 

Become a Diesel!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1Dec

How to Exercise Each and Every Day

00:0000:00

One thing that I guarantee will change your life for the better is this: build movement, or exercise, into your day.  Each and every day!

 

The thing is that you if you get out of the habit, if you start saying to yourself: “Oh, I don’t want to just spend time ‘exercising’, just spinning my wheels- I want to accomplish things!”; why then, you are setting yourself up for an increasingly unhealthy life.  For the truth is, movement is life!

 

It really is.  Nothing living ever thrives, or even enjoys life, by just lying dormant.  When we move, when the blood rushes through our bodies, we feel alive and well- because we are!  Sitting is not only the new smoking- it is a kind of death, in a way, if done to excess.  Sleeping is wonderful for us, and sitting is also great, when done in moderation.  Sitting is a good posture for active reflection: for reading, contemplation, meditation, eating at the table with our ‘tribe’- all very good postures and activities.

 

Sitting in front of a screen, however- whether tv, computer, smart phone or ipad- this can become a type of bad hynosis, wasting our very lives.  Here is how to use a screen productively:  Exercise in front of the television!

 

I know, I’ve brought this up before, because it really works.  When I awake in the morning, I don’t think ‘what should I do first this morning’, and wander downstairs, make breakfast, and run off to work with maybe a little perfunctory stretching.  No, I awaken, after a good 8-9 hour night’s sleep, because that’s what I always plan for.  I go into the bathroom, and do some mobility exercises, getting the synovial fluid going in my elbow, knees, ankles, shoulder and spine to ready my body for its daily movement.  This mobility and stretching routine takes about 2-3 minutes, tops.

 

Then, downstairs I go, feeling wide awake and looking forward to: my program!Whether movie, tv show, Netflix or Amazon Prime- NOW is the only time I allow myself to watch!  I am literally champing at the bit to watch a great program that I have queued up and have ready.  Lately, I’ve been watching the last season of Longmire, just so you know.

 

This system works beautifully!  I almost never miss my morning workout, and my stretching, pushups, situps, and virtual resistance exercises done on my rebounder actually make my television viewing more intense than if I was just sitting like a lump.  I’m barefoot, alone, and it’s just me and the show- it’s wonderful really.

 

And this is every day.  Think of the shape you will be in, how much your bodily health would benefit if you exercised religiously and thoroughly- every single day!  Trust me: your health and wellness will go off the charts, straight upwards- mine did, even though before adopting this regimen I used to work out 3-4 times per week.  Daily workouts are so much more beneficial, they revamp your whole body and mindset!  AND, they actually become in many ways the high point of your entire day.  Hard to believe, but very true for all that- exercise, the thing most people dread more than anything- becomes your favorite thing!

 

Just make sure it is Perfectly Paleo Exercise, which is outlined in my ebook, and at  www.paleojay.com.  Virtual resistance and self resisted exercise, along with high rep calisthenics and rebounding, with stretching built into your routine as well.  Natural Exercise, if you will…

 

You will be healthy and happy, trust me.  In fact, I enjoy exercise so much now, that I also go out in the afternoons most days to ‘heavyhand’ walk, and at least twice per week I do my heavy basement workouts on my gymnastic rings and utilizing my power rack for isometrics- but, on those basement workouts and on my power walks: I listen to podcasts. 

 

In a way, I ‘bribe’ myself into exercise, because it works!  Go thou and do likewise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

21Oct

Bone Broth and Kidney Stones Podcast on Paleojays Smoothie Cafe

00:0000:00

And so is chanca piedra, which I promised I would mention after my previous podcast about my kidney stone!

 

Now, these two items- bone broth and kidney stones are related, so stay tuned and I will explain.  I got my kidney stone from, I believe now, actually overdosing on spinach for years and years!  Contrary to popular belief, spinach has gotten a “halo of virtue”, and we all think it is nothing but loads of beneficial vitamins and minerals, all in a pretty green package.  But it also has oxalates, which are a chemical or ester that protects the spinach plant.  And the wheat plant, the rhubarb, the raspberry- in fact, many plants that we tend to regard as all good! 

 

They’re not.  And if you, like me now, have ever experienced the utter pain of a kidney stone, you will realize that.  But in addition, this chemical, which is stored away in the form of calcium crystals throughout the body of those of us mammals that dare to eat the plant that contains them, can cause all sorts of pain and illness in the human body. 

 

From joint pains, to tooth and bone density issues, to sleep troubles and digestive issues!  Oxalates are like gluten and gliaden- insidious, harmful, and hard to track or trace.  Kidney stones are just one of the more obvious contamination issues.  But I have two suggestions for you:

 

First- get rid of your kidney stone, if you have one, as fast as possible- pass by the urologist and the incredible pain and expense he will offer you, and order a bottle of chanca piedra for about $12.  Take a dropper full in each of the many, many glasses of water you should also be drinking to get rid of the dang thing, and hold on tight!

 

And above all, from now on go on a low oxalate diet!  I would drop spinach entirely, along with rhubarb, beets, and raspberries- oxalate levels in each of these are off the charts.  Of course, I hope you are already off of wheat, since that is also high in this poison as well as gluten.  And step two?

 

Heal your gut!  A leaky gut opens you to every disease under the sun, so get to healing it.  Bone Broth is the best tool for this that there is, helping to sooth, heal, and finally seal your gut lining- this is really job #1 in both health maintenance and health restoration!  As Hippocrates said so long ago: “All health begins in the gut.”  And it turns out he was right.

 

Once again, the best web site I have found on oxalates and their dangers is this one: https://sallyknorton.com/  Read through what she has to say, and take it to heart.  I have no affiliation with her whatsoever, but I recognize excellence and knowledge when I see and hear it, and Sally Norton has it.  Take her advice, along with mine, and heal thyself!

8Oct

I Hate Oxalates!

00:0000:00

I’ll admit, this is a new one for me.  A new, and painful lesson, to be sure- I got a kidney stone! 

 

Now, of course I had heard of kidney stones- my little brother actually had one a few years back, and went through a really painful, expensive operation to get it removed.  ‘But not me’, I thought- ‘I am always healthy, never need to get treated for anything, and prize my health beyond measure!  To this end, I always drink a daily Green Smoothie, with coconut milk (good), spices (good), cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower (good), along with kefir, apple cider vinegar, ginger root, and berries- all of which are good. 

 

But I also put in either a big portion of raw spinach, or a beet and beet greens- sometimes both! I’ve been doing this for years and years…

 

Most of us think that any dark green is very healthy, indeed- I know I did.  I grew up with Popeye the Sailorman, who is ‘strong to the finish- when he eats his spinach- he’s Popeye the sailor man’.  Well, just add Popeye, one of my childhood heroes, to the list of authority figures like M.D.’s and medical clinics, left-wing politicians and others who are and always have been wrong.  (However well-meaning.)  But, it does turn out that kale is relatively low in oxalates, as are mustard greens!

 

As I already knew, plants are chemical warfare masters, coming up with things like phytic acid and gluten and gliadin, (among other toxic chemicals) that are loaded into wheat so that we mammals don’t eat them or their babies.  After all, since plants can’t run away or fight, chemical toxins are their only defense, really.  This is why wheat is so awful for us, particularly modern wheat.  But it is also why spinach and many other plants are also bad, because they are loaded with a chemical called an oxalate.

 

Nuts, beans, and peanuts are oxalate bombs- eat sparingly, along with your dark chocolate- after all, these things are treats- desserts, really- not a main food group!  And of course, grains are horrible, high sources of oxalate poisons, best eliminated entirely if possible. 

 

Of course, I’d heard of oxalates- but I had never heard just how bad they really are, especially if you take in enough that your body cannot readily get rid of them- then, they form oxalate crystals, and unfortunately I eventually got one, right inside my right kidney.  It hurts something awful, too, but I’ve learned how to deal with that- I just keep completely hydrated, drinking mostly water, but also lemon water and cranberry juice- as long as I stay really hydrated, there is no pain.  I expect to pass the stone naturally- I will keep you posted. 

 

The bad thing is, oxalates also do lots of other damage- to your teeth, to your gut lining (oh no-just like wheat!), to your bones, making them week- and also contributes to all kinds of symptoms that we normally ascribe to aging, and so they are largely ignored as “natural”.  They are not!  Headaches, tendon and muscle pain, brain fog- the more I read, the more oxalates sound just like gluten- bad news all around!

 

I am going on a low oxalate diet.  After awhile, I can again include small portions of these foods, but for now I want my body to get rid of its stores of this poison.  Black pepper, potatoes, spinach and beet greens are bad- spinach is by far the worst- raw or cooked!

 

The goal should not be to eliminate oxalates completely, but to gradually lower them to less than 50 to 60 mg. per day.  Potato chips have 21 mg. per ounce- choose corn chips instead.  Rhubarb and raspberries are very high indeed, and are two of my favorites.  Or at least, they used to be!  Likewise black pepper- at least for now.  After awhile, up to 1 tsp. per day is OK- and really, who eats more than that?  Even the spices turmeric and circumin have oxalates, and I even found that cranberries are quite high- I guess that cranberry juice is out now!  Circumin supplements are particularly high…  Turmeric is similar to black pepper, in that no more than 1 tsp. per day- and again, who consumes more than that?

 

Meat and meat based products, along with most fruits are quite free of oxalates!  This includes dairy, and this is wonderful news indeed.  It appears that vegetarians and vegans are particularly prone to high oxalate diets, and this makes perfect sense.  I found a good authority in www.sallyknorton.com  She is an expert in oxalates and in low oxalate diet and its benefits.  I recommend her site highly.

 

Also, it is quite difficult to really get a handle on what foods are, really, high in oxalates I’ve found.  Many say one food is “really high”, but if you check out this chart, you can see that, if eaten occasionally rather than daily, they really are no problem.  For instance, a baked potato (by the way, never eat the skin!) is about 18 mg per 100 grams- this is ok, for instance, kept to a weekly basis.  All alcohol is pretty much fine, although the lists love to say they are “off limits- except of course for the hallowed red wine- which, of course, the ‘intellectuals’ putting together these lists can’t imagine living without!  Beer is really low too, though they list it as high risk. 

 

This list is very helpful:  http://www.wakehealth.edu/Urology/Kidney-Stones/Oxalate-Content-of-Foods.htm

 

In addition, in order to bring my own condition to a speedy conclusion, I have ordered an herb tincture called Chanka Pedreo, which is widely recommend to help break down kidney stones.  Once again, I will do a personal N=1 experiment, and let you know my outcome.

 

My own takeaway is that perhaps we need to go back to the rudiments of the original Paleo Diet, which recommended no potatoes, tomatoes, or other nightshades!  Once again, I shall keep you posted.  Good DAY!

 

 

 

 

 

24Sep

YOU are responsible for your health!

00:0000:00

In this time of snowflakes, or those who cannot experience one moment of discomfort in their lives, one of the worst trends, health-wise, is that of folks relying- actually worshipping medical clinics and standard doctors! 

 

I have nothing against M.D.’s, they are wonderful to have around when you have stopped a bullet or been run over by a bus.  They are trained, since the Civil War (which, by the way snowflakes, was a war where white men fought and died to free black slaves), to save men that have been traumatized dramatically, and help them to survive, ultimately to return to the battle field.  Really, this is when modern western medicine really got in its stride.  Emergency medicine!

 

But, in terms of staying healthy, getting healthy, or regaining health- sorry, it is all up to you. 

 

I think this is the whole disconnect, right there.  Nowadays, people want to think that medical doctors and clinics can save them, literally.  Save them from themselves!  The vast majority of people do not want to change what they eat, and their lifestyle, one bit.  They want to continue to eat cereal for breakfast, but they will use skim milk, since that will save them.  (Low fat)

 

They also want to eat fast food for lunch, and sometimes they will eat a salad with the supplied soybean rancid seed oil dressing, washing it down with an artificially sweetened beverage, and having a bun or some other GMO crap topped with loads of more rancid seed oil, in the form of margarine. (Because it’s low fat, don’t you know) 

 

Supper can be a thick crust, Chicago style pizza, since you have been “good” all day, eating low fat, and watching those calories!  You are starving, so you eat the whole thing- after all, you walked in your cushioned sneakers at the mall for a good 30 minutes this morning.  You stay up late, watching CNN and feeling virtuous, since you are doing so well- and you can’t wait for your doctor’s appointment at the clinic next week, since you know you will do so well, since you follow all of their recommendation to the letter!  You just want to ask your doctor why you can’t lose weight; you just keep yo-yoing up and down- and you have constant headaches, and then there is your acid reflux that is becoming chronic.  You are so depressed as well…

 

What a surprise at the clinic when the doctor raises alarm bells- your health appears to be horrible!  Your triglycerides are sky high, and he recommends a statin, high blood pressure medication- and- oh yes, it’s time for a colonoscopy, along with a series of tests that need to be scheduled, since you are over 50 now, and everyone over 50 needs lots of medications and continual tests, since otherwise you can never stay alive.

 

You go home with your bags and bags of pills you got from the pharmacy.  You feel virtuous!  You are doing everything right!  You eat lots and LOTS of whole grains, not too much white flour, (except maybe your pizza, but you do mostly right- wheat chex every morning, right?)  And the doctor says that mall walking is probably the best exercise that you can do, along with Zumba, which you plan to start next month.  Things are looking great!

 

But, as you watch the bluish glow from your large-screen TV, you kind of wonder why you feel like crap?  You remember Grandma and Grandpa, who lived on that hardscrabble farm in the midwest… How had they survived so long?  They ate bacon and eggs every morning like clockwork, and slaughtered their own animals as well.  They never made near as much money as you do, out in the suburbs, but the always seemed healthy and happy, Grandpa out cutting wood in his late 80’s while Grandma was frying bacon and then doing all of the household chores, including weeding the huge vegetable garden on a near daily basis.

 

You look distractedly at Rachel Maddow, your hero, and remember that Grandma and Grandpa always were in bed by 9, while you never go to bed before midnight, despite having to get up at 5.  YOU are no stick-in-the-mud like those old fossils, even thought you love them dearly.  Those poor, benighted souls…all of that butter, and red meat, and just a high fat diet!  How can they stay alive??

 

Shrugging, you remember you need to take your pills- blood pressure, statins, anti-depressants, acid-blockers- well, the list goes on and on.  You feel great as you take them, knowing you are destined, through medical science, to live the longest, healthiest life in the history of the human race, thanks to worshipping the medical science developed in the 1970’s!!

 

Finally, you go to bed.  Since you live in a metropolitan area, since of course the job prospects are so much more lucrative there, you lie in bed listening to the sirens and urban clamor all around you.  The bright lights from the street lights shine in on your bedroom, so you sure don’t need a nightlight!  You smile.  Grandma and Grandpa have been sleeping for hours!  What kind of life is that, anyway?  You lie back, waiting for sleep to come- tomorrow will be a stressful day, in fact they are all stressful days- high pressure!

 

You lie there, light shining in your windows, noise outside as it will continue all night.  You can’t sleep, in fact you almost never can sleep.  ‘Have to ask the doctor about  sleeping pills next week,’ you think.  You pull out your phone, and check out facebook- you sigh.  This will be one long night; hopefully you will get a few hours of sleep.

 

At 6 AM the next morning, Grandpa gets out of bed, and goes lightly downstairs to make the coffee for the two of them.  He starts his morning exercises, doing limbering and stretching ones mostly, but concluding with pushups and situps, of which he can do a surprising number, strictly. 

 

After showering, Grandma comes down, and they make a large breakfast together of eggs, meat, and a big smoothie made in their Vitamix- their offspring would be startled and horrified, since it is a high fat smoothie, and a high fat meal altogether!  They laugh together, and talk, planning their day.  Grandpa needs to mow their rural acreage with his tractor, which he loves, so Grandma will run to town to get some ribs and steak for later on, along with some baking potatoes, that she will load with sour cream and pastured butter.  The sun shines down on their rural place, and Grandpa smiles as he goes out to his tractor- this will be a fulfilling day!

 

You kind of wake up, after the alarm on your phone goes off, on the nightstand right next to your head.  You really don’t know if you ever slept, really, or not.  You only know you feel groggy.  You stumble downstairs, and put some whole wheat bread in the toaster, and pull out the margarine.  ‘How am I going to make it through this day?’ you think.  ‘I feel like crap, what will I do later when I’m even more tired?”  You munch your tasteless bread, topped with an even more tasteless and nutrition less fake fat.  You drink your coffee, laced with skimmed milk and artificial sweetener.  You finally take a shower with fake soap that is mainly Sodium Lauryl Sulphate.  You remember that you have to also ask the doctor about why your skin is so dry, red and flaking!  My goodness, this doctor list of questions keeps growing and growing.

 

You smile, thankful that you are ultimately saved!  Modern medicine is a miracle- you will live a really long life, unlike Grandma and Grandpa and others like them.  They don’t know about science- they are hicks- rubes, really- the fact that they are so old shows that they don’t know anything!

 

 

 

 

 

 

18Sep

Skin Health Shows Overall Health!

00:0000:00

A very important component of health is skin health.  In a large way, the health of your skin is directly related to your diet and lifestyle: if you eat a good paleo type of diet, in other words eating foods that enhance your health rather than those that cause inflammation on a daily basis, why then your skin will be clear and supple, smooth and healthy. 

 

This is because if you eat things like grain products and sugars on a regular basis, especially if it is daily, you are subjecting your gut lining to constant insult!  The actual mechanism is rather involved, since there are so many damaging components of modern wheat, which is very different from the ancient Einkorn strain of wheat that is mentioned in the bible.  This modern wheat contains a “super starch” that encourages the body to store fat at the same time that it damages our gut lining severely, opening the junctures within the lining to invaders in our digestive system that gain access right into our bodies through these “holes” within our intestinal lining.

 

Even if you don’t have full blown celiac disease, which is an absolute total intolerance to gluten, most folks have gluten sensitivity.  They simply do much better when gluten is eliminated from their diet- this is most people!  They lose fat weight, and they are not prone to acid reflux, diabetes, and even heart disease and cancer.  All by simply eliminating wheat from their diets!

 

Skin health is kind of the ‘canary in the coal mine’.  This skin is the largest organ on the body, and so any deterioration of the gut lining allowing the incursion of invaders into the body often shows up either in irritable bowel syndrome, or other obviously gut-induced illnesses, as well as in poor skin health- exzema, skin dryness and redness, psoriasis, acne, and most other skin problems.  On the skin, we can see when damage is occurring in the gut- it is that simple! 

Another thing about wheat is the fact that it is sprayed  with glyphosate, which is the active ingredient in Monsanto’s insidious Roundup pesticide, which is sprayed in quantities ever-increasing on crops in the U.S., one of the biggest crops being wheat.  Biblical wheat was not laced with poison…

 

If I told you that if you would eliminate entirely one component of your diet, namely wheat, and that one step would make you much leaner, far less prone to autoimmune diseases that are the scourge of the modern world, and also unlikely to develop either heart disease or cancer, would that make it worthwhile to you?

 

And if I further mentioned that if you also limited sugar and other sweeteners to small amounts only, along with gluten free versions of bread products, you would gain a vibrant health and wellness that was far beyond your dreams- would you do it??

 

Not only would this achieve life-long health and wellness pretty much all by itself, it would also give you glowing, clear skin!  And then, if you added in the “icing on the cake” you would not be eating anymore- things like 8 good hours of sleep each night, daily exercise of the Perfectly Paleo Exercise type, including lots of stretching and mobility work, self-resisted and virtually resisted movements, along with calisthenics and walking barefoot in nature on a weekly basis—

 

Now your health will be about as perfect as it can be!

 

For your whole life. 

 

No gradual deterioration of your abilities that you now take for granted.  Imagine it- for your whole life long, your plan is to be a vital, strong, healthy man or woman.  Someone who can lift heavy things, sit on the ground and easily get up again, sprint for short distances, walk for long ones, and never to be reliant on the physical help of others to accomplish simple tasks of daily living! 

 

Chiefly, you need to clean up your diet, make it a paleo type of diet, and then to gradually add in the other things I mention above, ideally.  If you do so, you will gain your birthright- To lead a healthy, pain-free, healthy and vital life, all the way up until you die of old age.  Still strong, vital, and aware! 

 

This is how we were designed and evolved to live as healthy people for a lifetime.  Adapt your life to the way it was meant to be lived, and it will happen.

 

 

 

 

 

28Aug

Exercise Versus Recreation

00:0000:00

Probably one of the most seminal things I’ve ever read about exercise was an article written by Ken Hutchins, the originator of Superslow.  Ken’s exercise protocol was groundbreaking, in that he pinpointed exactly what the actual goal should be in exercise! 

 

If you don’t know what you are even aiming at, you are never going to hit the target!  And it is a true statement that: the vast majority of people, exercise “specialists” included- don’t know what exercise really is, and what the real goal of exercise is. 

 

Most “exercise” falls in the recreation category, not exercise.  Real exercise has the goal of improving physical fitness, period.  This means doing what it takes to improve-

 

Muscular size, strength and endurance

Bone strength

Cardiovascular efficiency

Enhanced flexibility

Contributing to body leanness

Increased resistance to injury

 

That makes perfect sense, right?  Exercise is all about improving your body.  Of course, stress relief and other benefits also incidentally accrue- but the bottom line in physical improvement!  Exercise should send a signal to the body- improve, or you may die.  The basic demands of nature are that severe. 

 

I think that many in the paleo community, as well as of course the general public, are completely ignorant of this.  The prevailing concept is that any movement is exercise. 

 

Wrong.  Just “moving”, whether it be in a sport, or any other activity, however strenuous, is recreation, not exercise.  Recreation is fun.  Exercise is definitely not fun- it is hard, uncomfortable, and brutal!  To be truly effective, it must go just beyond your comfort zone, into a place where you want to stop before you’ve reached real fatigue- but you don’t!  You go on, doing a couple of more reps, even though it burns.  You do this for the results, not because it’s “fun”. 

 

It’s kind of a fine point, because almost everyone says they are walking, or running, or skiing, or playing football or baseball or doing Cross Fit or dancing for exercise.  You may gain a small bit of physical benefit from these activities, but it is incidental, and comes at the cost of possible injury and is a very inefficient means of increasing fitness.  For instance, in most sports, let’s pick football for instance, the off-season is when players concentrate on actually building fitness.  Then, during the playing season, they progressively become less and less fit, as they overtrain and inevitably get injured.  Their sport is recreation, not exercise.

 

Real Exercise is actually pushing yourself hard, but briefly.  This not only increases muscular size, strength and endurance- it also trains your cardio system at the same time, since stressing the musculature is exactly the way that we stress, (and thus enhance) the cardiovascular system! 

 

The other component of real exercise is allowing the body adequate nutrition, and the time for the body to adapt to the exercise stimulus.  The body does not grow stronger while you are exercising- it can only rebuild once you are done.  If you sleep adequately, eat a good, paleo type of diet, and wait long enough before you truly exercise again- why then, your body will grow stronger, and better, more resilient- it will improve.  This, my friend, is true exercise!

 

Now, Ken Hutchins went to extremes.  He recommended training to absolute failure, and then taking 5 days or so between sessions.  I disagree with this, as I found that not only does maximum muscular overload become dangerous in the long term, but this practice ignores the importance of the daily, or near daily oxygenation of the blood pumping through the musculature.  I believe this blood pumping, only achievable with high-rep exercise, is crucial for overall health and fitness! 

 

Hence, my recommendation of doing high rep calisthenics, along with near maximum resistance isometrics, self resisted exercises, and above all virtual resistance exercises.  These can all be done perfectly safely, and they all address the six factors of real exercise that I mentioned before. 

 

In addition, doing a set of super slow exercise, such as pushups done really, really slowly- (10 seconds up, 10 down) is a brutal, yet highly effective way to perform real exercise!  In fact, it is the “most bang for the buck” of any exercise you can do.  But do it in moderation. 

 

It is that taxing on the central nervous system, and can “burn you out” if you do it too much.  I say, exercise daily!  Enjoy it, but make sure you make it hard, not fun.  Then, take a walk in the woods.  Go dancing.  Play basketball, baseball, or whatever trips your trigger.  Recreation is great, really!  Enjoy it- that’s what it’s for.

 

Just don’t think it is exercise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

23Aug

Keto or Paleo?

00:0000:00

The world of nutrition and fitness, health and wellness is as fraught with fads and fashions, unfortunately, just like almost everything else.  The cutting edge thing right now is the ketogenic diet!

 

Forget paleo diet- in this iteration of the perfect human diet, we go beyond paleo- we don’t just go “low carb”, we go virtually no carbohydrates!  Actually, that’s not quite true: perhaps 25 grams per day of so is permissible.  One medium banana has 27 grams of carbs, so you get the idea- ketogenic is almost no carbs at all!  Even things like your daily paleo green smoothie, such as I recommend with green and cruciferous veggies, kefir and, probably contains more carbs than that, probably about 30 grams or so.  Still quite low carb, but not quite keto carb level!

 

On the side of the ketogenic diet, it is definitely true that this way of eating can be incredibly therapeutic!  It has been used successfully for literally thousands of years, going back to ancient Greek times, in the treatment of epilepsy.  Fasting was recommended to treat epilepsy in 400 BC!  And Jesus recommended it in the book of Mark: And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.

 

He was referring to the a young boy, who lay thrashing and foaming at the mouth, which is a symptom of epilepsy.  Now, it must be noted that fasting is, in itself- ketogenic.  If you stop eating altogether, after a certain point you will begin burning stored fat for fuel- you are then ketogenic!  It really is that simple.  Humans have been going in and out of ketosis for all of history.

 

The difference today is that now, in this age of agriculture as opposed to hunting and gathering Neolithic times, we are absolutely surrounded with carbohydrates, protein, and all kinds of sugars, day and night!  And, of course, it is killing us, making us fat and sick, diabetic and prone to all sorts of autoimmune disease.  Going back to a Paleo type of diet, with fat and protein, and a few natural carbs like berries or sweet potato is the antidote.

 

But now, since everyone likes to go to extremes, ketogenic is seen as the way to go.  My take?  Well, aside from the fact that my moniker is PaleoJay, you must know which side I will come down on, right?   Well, I do say paleo is a wonderful way to cure most ills of modern life, but a ketogenic does indeed have its place.  It is wonderful as a therapeutic tool!

 

I go in and out of ketosis all the time!  Intermittent fasting is an in-between way of having the best of both worlds.  You know: eat supper at around 4 PM, and don’t eat again until 10 or 11 AM the next day.  Actually, this is kind of my daily routing now, so I kind of fast every single day.  It doesn’t feel like it, but I am.  My body just starts burning fat after 4 PM, and all through the night. 

 

In addition, I rarely have carbs in the morning, except for my paleo smoothie, coffee with coconut oil and heavy cream, and a couple of eggs.  Maybe bacon, on a really good day!  So actually, my keto continues on until lunch/supper (I usually only eat two meals per day). 

 

So what I guess I’m saying is that if you have an autoimmune disease, like type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s, or any of the myriad other diseases that are autoimmune, including cancer and heart disease- by all means- go on a strict ketogenic diet!  Lots and lots of fat, limited protein, (excess protein is turned into carbs by the body), and really no carbs at all.  You will pretty much be eating lots of fat, with just a bit of protein, and then fasting on top of it. 

 

It is a therapy.  Keto can be very effective in rectifying deep damage caused by our modern, faulty diet.  Do it until you are free of the autoimmune condition you suffer!  It probably won’t even take that long- often, modern disease can be reversed by fasting, going Keto if it will take a while so you don’t starve outright, and getting adequate sleep, sun exposure, and natural exercise.

 

After you are well, and happy, and ready to enjoy a healthy life? Go Paleo, young man or woman!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Older Posts »