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Is Creatine Safe For Women?

Not as uncommon a question as the more informed here might think! But, you too may have been asked that Q, and here’s a short vid to refer them to if/when they ask.

The Science Of Bomb Proof Coffee

coffeeIn Part I of Bomb Proof Coffee, I cover what’s in it and why, as well as how to make it, doses, sources, etc in video form HERE. If you’re new to Bomb Proof Coffee you’ll want to watch those videos for all the info you need to get started. This article will add some of the supporting science on the ingredients in Bomb Proof Coffee.

The obvious first ingredient to cover is the coffee. Coffee just continues to show itself to a have a wide variety of health benefits for both the brain and body. Not surprisingly, not all coffee is created and the levels of beneficial compounds depends on the type of processing and other factors. As the coffee itself is not the main focus of Bomb Proof Coffee per se, the Life Extension has a good article HERE covering the topic and offers a coffee with especially high levels of beneficial compounds found in coffee that might make a good choice for the coffee used in Bomb Proof Coffee.

Cocoa

Cocoa (cacao) Beans On Natural Wooden TableCocoa (the main ingredients in chocolate),  is rich in various polyphenols (including flavonoids/flavanols) and other  bio active compounds such as  amines, alkaloids,   tyramine, magnesium, procyanidins, phenylethylamine, and N-acylethanolamines. Cocoa has been shown to  reduce blood pressure, improve insulin resistance and improved endothelial function. A meta analysis found that the highest levels of chocolate consumption were associated with a 37% reduction in cardiovascular disease, and a 29% reduction in stroke compared with the lowest level of intake, an that’s despite the sugar and fat content of chocolate; reduced insulin resistance and reduced serum insulin levels were associated with the chocolate consumption. There are various studies that also suggest direct cognitive benefit of cocoa ingestion as well as neruo protection. The flavanol epicatechin is believed to be the main source of benefit, but there’s a wide range of compounds in cocoa and it’s highly likely there’s synergism between epicatechin and other flavanols as well as other compounds found in cocoa, many of which are still being elucidated. As mentioned via the vids on Bomb Proof Coffee, not all cocoa is created equal and the highest levels of beneficial compounds is found in cocoa that has not been “Dutch Processed” which is exposed to alkalization. The vast majority of cocoa sold commercially has been Dutch Processed/exposed to alkalization. The exact dose for optimal effects is unclear at this time and research is ongoing, but the dose recommended in Bomb Proof Coffee – if you’re using high quality cocoa that has not been exposed to alkalization – should have you covered well. See videos for more information on that. Cocoa, similar to coffee, is a highly complex  ingredient, which may have synergism when ingested together. Continue reading..

Dietary Guidelines on Fat Intake – were there ever any evidence to support the low-fat recommendation?

In an effort to slash heart disease, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans [1] have since 1977 been urging people to:

1. Reduce total fat consumption to 30% of total caloric intake.

2. Reduce saturated fat consumption to 10% of total energy intake.

Government issued dietary guidelines are highly authoritative and regarded by a majority as being backed by solid research. However, as it turns out, this is not the case…

Dietary recommendations regarding intake of total and saturated fat are highly controversial, and the debate is heating up. A recent systematic review and meta-analysis of six studies that were available 1977, when the first version of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans was published, shows: [2]

Continue reading..

What’s In Your Creatine? (Part III!)

 

Levels of creatine, organic contaminants and heavy metals in creatine dietary supplements
Food Chemistry. Volume 126, Issue 3, 1 June 2011, Pages 1232–1238

Abstract

High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) has been optimised for the analysis of the creatine content and possible organic contaminants in 33 samples of creatine supplements from the market. Creatinine resulted to be the major organic contaminant (44% of the samples over 100 mg/kg). About 15% of the samples had dihydro-1,3,5-triazine concentrations exceeding the detection limit of 4.5 mg/kg (maximum 8.0 mg/kg) and a dicyandiamide concentration over 50 mg/kg, while none of the samples were contaminated with thiourea. The heavy metals (arsenic, cadmium, mercury and lead) content was also assessed by means of inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Only mercury was present in detectable amounts (at levels lower than 1 mg/kg).

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Click Pic To Enlarge

 

 

Research highlights

• A survey on quality of creatine supplements commercialised in Italy has been carried out.
• Creatinine resulted to be the major organic contaminant (44% of the samples over 100 mg/kg).
• 50% of the products exceeded the maximum level recommended by EFSA for organic contaminants.
• Among heavy metals, only mercury was present in detectable amounts (<1 mg/kg)

Full Paper, which is not free, is HERE

What’s In Your Creatine Part I HERE and part II HERE

 

Testosterone and Fat Loss – The Evidence

It is well documented that obesity may cause hypogonadism, and that hypogonadism may cause obesity [1-4] This has generated debate about what condition comes first; obesity or hypogonadism? And what should be the first point of intervention?

In this article I will summarize data from several reviews on the associations of hypogonadism and obesity [1-4], and make the case that these conditions create a self-perpetuating vicious circle. Once a vicious circle has been established, it doesn’t matter where one intervenes; one can either treat the obese condition or treat hypogonadism first. The critical issue is to break the vicious circle as soon as possible before irreversible health damage arises.

Nevertheless, as I will explain here, treating hypogonadism first with testosterone replacement therapy may prove to be a more effective strategy because it to a large extent “automatically” takes care of the excess body fat and metabolic derangements. In addition, treating hypogonadism first also confers psychological benefits that will help obese men become and stay more physically active.

Key Points [1-4]

• Traditional obesity treatments with diet and exercise programs are notorious for failing in long-term maintenance of weight loss due to lack of adherence. Anti-obesity drugs have limited efficacy and may not be without adverse effects.

• In the prospective Massachusetts Male Aging Study (MMAS), non-obese men who became obese had a decline of testosterone levels comparable to that of 10 years of aging.

• Testosterone deficiency and obesity each contribute independently to a self-perpetuating vicious cycle.

• Long-term testosterone therapy in men with hypogonadism improves body composition, metabolic syndrome components and quality of life, and thereby can help break the vicious cycle.

• Treatment of hypogonadism with long-term testosterone therapy, with or without lifestyle modifications, effectively treats obesity by correcting testosterone deficiency; one physiological root cause of obesity.

• In contrast to the U-shaped curve for weight loss seen with traditional obesity treatments, which are characterized by weight loss and weight regain, treatment with testosterone therapy results in a continuous reduction in obesity parameters (waist circumference, weight and BMI) for >5 years, or until metabolic abnormalities return to healthy ranges.

• The significant effectiveness of testosterone therapy in combating obesity in hypogonadal men remains largely unknown to doctors. Educational efforts are therefore critical to bring research findings into clinical practice in order to improve patient care and health outcomes.

Continue reading..

Does Dieting Make People Fatter?

They answer, in many cases, is yes. I explore that issue in this vid. For those who want to get into the details of the topic, and excellent review paper is linked below.

How dieting makes the lean fatter: from a perspective
of body composition autoregulation through
adipostats and proteinstats awaiting discovery

A. G. Dulloo, J. Jacquet, J.-P. Montani and Y. Schutz
Department of Medicine, Division of
Physiology, University of Fribourg, Switzerland

Summary

Whether dieting makes people fatter has been a subject of considerable controversy
over the past 30 years. More recent analysis of several prospective studies suggest,
however, that it is dieting to lose weight in people who are in the healthy normal
range of body weight, rather than in those who are overweight or obese, that most
strongly and consistently predict future weight gain. This paper analyses the ongoing
arguments in the debate about whether repeated dieting to lose weight in normal-
weight people represents unsuccessful attempts to counter genetic and familial
predispositions to obesity, a psychosocial reaction to the fear of fatness or that
dieting per seconfers risks for fatness and hence a contributing factor to the obesity
epidemic.

Continue reading..

Overcoming Disordered Eating: The Jenny Goodwin Story

INTRO: I remember well when Jenny was a new member  to the Fat Loss Revealed forums. She was in need of a serious revamp of her approach to  nutrition and exercise  to get the results she wanted. Like so many, she was confused and overwhelmed by all the conflicting and terrible information out there. What I didn’t know at the time was she had been dealing with eating disorders which obviously compounded her ability to get on the right track for her health, well-being and personal fitness goals. Regular writer for BrinkZone,  long time member of both the Fat Loss Revealed and Body Building Revealed forums, trainer, and owner of shailafitness.com, Sumi Singh does a Q&A with Jenny on how she finally broke threw the barriers, which I think everyone will find inspiring, regardless of where you are in your personal health/fitness journey. Jenny shows that with the right info, hard work, commitment to change, it can be done; be it fat loss, improved health, etc.

Excerpt  from “Overcoming Disordered Eating: A Personal Story”

 

Sumi: What was your first sign to yourself, that something wasn’t right?

Jenny: When you are so hungry and yet so afraid of people seeing you eat—for fear they’ll judge you— that you feel it necessary to sneak food and inhale it while hidden in a bathroom or closet…it’s a pretty strong indication something is not right.

Sumi: I understand you went through several phases; first anorexia, then bulimia. Or was it a mix of both?

Jenny-Collage

Jenny in her various phases now fit and healthy!

Jenny: It was a mix over the years. I started by skipping meals and going long periods having only eaten a very small amount. That can really only be sustained short-term because people start noticing and the last thing I wanted was for someone to nag me about how I needed to eat moreAlso, you get really hungry eventually you binge because, well, you’re hungry. So that’s when the purging started because I realized I could eat and appease those people saying I needed to eat and the food didn’t really ‘count’ since it wouldn’t be staying down there for long. To me, that was balance—don’t eat around certain people, then eat and purge when you’re around others.I also exercised quite a bit; I grew up roller skating and I bought VHS tapes and did them at home. Cher’s first step aerobics VHS was my jam and I did it so much that I had it memorized (I could probably do it today with my eyes closed).

Sumi: When did you realize that you needed help? Who helped you? What steps did you take?

Jenny: This all continued on and off for around 9 years. I did go months at a time without purging, but disordered eating (skipping meals, hiding food, starving, and bingeing) was still very much a part of me for 9 years.Then I met the man that would later become my husband and he was accepting and loving and even though I thought I had hid my ED well (I had hid it from everyone else), he knew and he told me it wasn’t necessary and I believed him. I felt safe being me. I’m oversimplifying it, but really at that time, I thought that because he loved me, I could just be me and I’d be fine. I didn’t fear eating in front of him, so I ate. Unfortunately, I didn’t know how to eat properly; we were poor growing up, so all I knew was soda, fast food, spaghetti noodles with butter, comfort foods, etc. So what do you think happened? I got fat, that’s what happened. I basically swapped one extreme for the other.

It didn’t happen overnight, but little by little over the years I piled on the fat. I was overfat and feeling helpless—that was me. I could say that because I had stopped purging and I was now fat—which is what most consider to be the opposite of someone with an ED—that I was recovered from my ED, but I would be lying, right? Because overeating to the point of becoming overfat is still a form of disordered eating, isn’t it? Anyway, I didn’t want to go back to what I had done before, because I didn’t want to end up in the same place I started…

Meanwhile my husband was applying for a new career and we had started doing a lot of research about it and I ended up on some forums intended for those applying for this particular field. The application process required that you pass a physical agility test and there was this one guy on the forums that was super helpful to everyone and kept answering people’s questions on how to prepare for such a test.

That man was Will Brink. He was so knowledgeable on fat loss and fitness, so I started researching Will and found his Fat Loss Revealed e-book and forums. I bought his book in 2009 and I would say that’s when my real life-changing journey started.

I dove into the e-book and forums and started reading as much as possible, trying to learn how to lose fat and be healthy. At first it was like reading a foreign language, but I was determined and the moderators on the forum were so knowledgeable, helpful and patient…boy, were they patient. I asked anything and everything and if I didn’t understand, I would ask for clarification.

FULL INTERVIEW CLICK HERE

 

 

 

 

 

Got Back Pain?

Got Back Pain?

Chronic back pain is at epidemic proportions that costs $100 billion annually in the US alone. That’s billion with a capital B folks!  One of my favorite general public articles on the topic was in News Week and was titled “The Great Back Debate.”

In many respects, it was a most ground breaking article. Why? Because it was major “mainstream” publication that attempted to examine truly non-traditional causes of back pain. It made a serous attempt to look at non-physical causes of back pain and non-invasive treatments. Causes that would have been relegated to “non-scientific” status just a few years before that, were being taken seriously by a normally conservative publication. I consider it a must read article for anyone with chronic back pain.

In particular, the article explored the psychological basis for back pain, and did so commendably. Since that article, several reviews on the topic have come out, and continued to support the general conclusions from the News Week article. Some key comments in the article for example:

The answer, Carragee and others believe, has as much to do with the mind as it does with the body. In the HIZ study, the best predictor of pain was not how bad the defect looked but the patient’s psychological distress. Depression and anxiety have long been linked to pain; a recent Canadian study found that people who suffer from severe depression are four times more likely to develop intense or disabling neck or low-back pain. At the Integrative Care Center of New York’s Hospital for Special Surgery, physiatrist Gregory Lutz says he routinely sees men who have two things in common: rip-roaring sciatica and an upcoming wedding date. The problem in their back, possibly a degenerated or herniated disc, probably already existed, says Lutz, but was intensified by the ole premarriage jitters.Continue reading..

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