Paleo and science, Crossfit and steroids

By September 16, 2016Stuff We Like
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It’s been a quieter week here at TrainerSync as we’re working through some feedback and improving our software. Meanwhile, half the team has taken a well deserved holiday break, and I’ve been doing a lot of organising of a lot of posts I have read and collected over the last few years, so here’s a slightly longer version of our Stuff We Like post this week:

What we’re interested in here at TrainerSync is the truth about fitness and nutrition, the best ways to keep you fit, healthy and achieving your goals, and the best ways to help your clients. We’re not into bad-mouthing certain points of view in this arena (although if we think something is ridiculous, we’ll probably say so), nor are we going to tell you how we think you should live your life, but we do want to share with you views which, we believe, have genuine credibility.

That’s why, for example, you may not see us write much about the science published via funding from Coca Cola about how obesity is linked to, well, anything that isn’t a sugary beverage (see our fourth panel below), but you will sometimes see us share information which you might feel is contradictory in nature from one thing to another.

And that’s fine by us – all these paths will lead to significant health and wellness in most people and you can learn a lot from studying these different modalities.

So, for good examples of exactly that, the first of our five things we like this week is a two parter from Kiefer on a call to abandon Paleo, while the next one is a two parter from Mark Sisson on scientific support for the Paleo diet (you may remember we linked to the first part in an earlier blog post). After that, I’m sharing Stephan Guyenet’s review of a recent research paper involving fat loss under different macronutrient profiles, so those three things should give you plenty to think about in that arena!

Rounding off this week is a post on the problem with industry-funded research, and some timely straight talk about Crossfit and Steroids.

I hope you enjoy!

Martin-Pierre

Kiefer’s written a (currently) two-part series on his reasoning as to why we should abandon the Paleo diet and the pursuit of ancestral health. I’m a huge fan of much of the Paleo movement – I’ve mentioned Robb Wolf and Mark Sisson already in these blog posts – but to ignore much of what is outside of that movement is to all our detriment.

Here’s Part One and Part Two.

While these blog posts from Mark’s Daily Apple are not a rebuttal per se to the above, they do show several studies which are exceedingly positive for the Paleo diet, showing a broad range of positive effects.

Here’s Part One and Part Two.

Here’s Stephan Guyenet’s review of a recent research paper, which further undermines the carbohydrate-insulin hypothesis of obesity.

So, after those three posts, what’s best for fat loss and health? Is it carbs, is it fat, is it calories, is it having to go ketogenic (and not just “low” carb), or is it something else? And is it about eating clean, or cutting out gluten, and does your gut biome hold the answers to the meaning of life?

Of course, depending on your current health, your desires in life and your goals, it’s all or none of the above (possibly aside from your gut biome having that particular answer to hand). A lot depends on you as an individual. The best thing we can say about all of this is experiment for yourself, see how you look, feel and perform, and adapt from there. Just keep considering your health most of the time, keep learning, keep moving and you’ll do just fine.

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Talking of learning, there’s always good science and bad science. Being a better trainer means knowing the difference and how to apply that knowledge to help your clients.

Here’s a post written by James McIntosh for MedicalNewsToday, on the problem with industry-funded research. And, make no mistake, it’s a huge problem.

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John Romano, writing for T-Nation in 2014, on the rise of Crossfit & Steroids. While this is about Crossfit and Performance Enhancing Drugs (PEDs), the author isn’t anti-Crossfit, or any other training modality or type of sport, but more the ignorance that can permeate through society at the usually quite clear use of PEDs in professional sports, and why this will always happen if it can. And it can.

Talking of PEDs, here’s one of the BBC’s reports on the whistleblower of a huge number of professional athletes from a couple of weeks ago – potentially huge news but, much like when cycling hit the front pages for all the wrong reasons, this should not be something that surprises those of us who work in the industry.

Bottom line, if there’s money and fame involved in a competitive atmosphere, expect prolific drug use. Plenty of you might not like to hear it (I know we don’t here!), but let’s accept reality rather than try to hide away from what is actually happening in much of professional sports, and help educate people to do the right things for them.

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