Sunday, June 22, 2008

Is Our Fate All in Our Genes?

Well, maybe not so much as we thought, according to a report in Scientific American. So read on and learn some pretty encouraging news . . .

Dean Ornish, MD, is founder and president of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute and a clinical professor at the University of California, San Francisco (U.C.S.F.). He said the following:

"We found that simple changes have a powerful impact on gene expression. People say, 'Oh, it's all in my genes, what can I do?' That's what I call genetic nihilism. This may be an antidote to that. Genes may be our predisposition, but they are not our fate."

Read the full Scientific American report here

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Is Grief Counseling Useful?

This may step on some sensitive toes, but for a long time I have believed that the law of diminishing returns comes into play at some point, probably sooner rather than later, in all talk therapy. No, I'm not an expert, just a guy with an opinion formed by observation and life experience. However, I do happen to live in a place many people consider therapy central. That is, I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. If nothing else, that should give me some measure of "street-cred" when it comes to the subject.

It appears my suspicions are at least partly confirmed by a report in Scientific American. You can read about their findings here or listen to a short podcast.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Post-Workout Carb/Protein Ratio

Is it really important to get that perfect carb-to-protein ratio within an hour after a workout? I must admit that I try to come close to it.

Now it seems that sports doctors are thinking the whole timing business is an exaggeration and maybe even a myth. Two Canadian doctors, athletes themselves, have studied the matter and concluded that its importance is negligible, when applied to most people. And the American College of Sports Medicine seems to concur.

The article is worth reading. Go here.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Old Golfers Never Die . . .

I am not a golfer. It’s a wonderful game that never appealed to me. In my view, Mark Twain had it right: “Golf is a good walk spoiled.”

But let’s give credit where credit is due. According to a study in Sweden, the death rate for golfers is 40% lower than for other people of the same sex, age and socioeconomic status. That adds up to a five year increase in life expectancy. And golfers with a low handicap are the safest.

Gray Iron is not here to argue, but I do wonder: Are the benefits of playing regularly negated if too much time is spent afterward at the 19th hole?

Read the full report in Science Daily.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Gym Grunter is Silenced

It’s a common annoyance in plenty of gyms and health clubs, obnoxious characters who make really loud grunts and groans with practically every exercise repetition. You know the type. Fortunately, those who crave that kind of attention tend to gravitate to certain gyms and are therefore avoidable. I’m grateful that I don’t hear much of it where I workout.

But it does happen. And if you've been around any gym grunters, I think you’ll enjoy this story about one such grunter who pushed someone to the limit, and the whole business ended up in court. I won’t spoil the story by telling you the outcome. Read about Gym Grunter Not Assaulted by Silencer, a Jury Rules.