Too little time? Stressed! Too much time? Not happy. So is there a sweet spot? Omega-3 fat shown to prevent or slow progression of osteoarthritis. BPA gets added to the cancer files – again. Can you really influence your family and friends to get healthy by YOU losing weight and getting healthy first?
Too Much Time On Your Hands? Not Good
Too Little Time? Not Good
There Is a Sweet Spot to Time
What is more desirable: too little or too much spare time on your hands? To be happy, somewhere in the middle, according to Chris Manolis and James Roberts from Xavier University in Cincinnati and Baylor University in Waco, TX. Their work shows that materialistic young people with compulsive buying issues need just the right amount of spare time to feel happier (1).
The authors conclude: “Living with a sensible, balanced amount of free time promotes well-being not only directly, but also by helping to alleviate some of the negative side effects associated with living in our consumer-orientated society.”
Omega-3 Fatty Acids Shown to Prevent or Slow Progression of Osteoarthritis
So let’s set the table real quick. Osteoarthritis (OA), for an aging population, is set to become the fourth leading cause of disability by 2020.
We, eating a typical Western “diet”, consume too many omega-6 fatty acids and not enough omega-3 (fatty fish and flax). It’s been cited in other research that we consume 15-30 times as much omega-6 compared to omega-3. Our high consumption of omega-6 fats has been associated with a number of inflammatory disorders such as heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis and colitis. Similarly, elevated levels of omega-6 have been linked to OA in bone and cartilage.
Our Paleolithic ancestors consumed about a 1:1 ration of omega-6 to omega-3 fats. That is, the ratios were about the same. I believe, as do many researchers, that getting closer to a 1:1 ratio is something to strive for and to use supplementation (fish and/or flax oils) if necessary to achieve it.
The study I’m reviewing here today used guinea pigs, not humans. Dr Tarlton, one of the study authors stated “The only way of being certain that the effects of omega-3 are as applicable to humans as demonstrated in guinea pigs is to apply omega-3 to humans. However, osteoarthritis in guinea pigs is perhaps the most appropriate model for spontaneous, naturally occurring osteoarthritis, and all of the evidence supports the use of omega-3 in human disease (3).
“This study demonstrates clear benefits of omega-3 supplementation in reducing the signs of OA in a naturally occurring model of disease. We propose that a high omega-3 diet has the potential to reduce signs of OA in both cartilage and subchondral bone. Further studies are needed to determine the influence of n-3 on established disease, and to confirm these effects in human OA (4).”
BPA and Breast Cancer Link
First, I need to really just start a file on BPA (bisphenol A). This stuff, it appears more and more, although only entering our bodies in parts per trillion each day, is just nasty.
BPA is an industrial compound primarily used to manufacture polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins and it is commonly found in household items including kitchen utensils, food storage containers, travel mugs and metal can linings. Animal studies have linked BPA to a variety of health problems such as infertility, prostate cancer and breast cancer, but not without disagreement as to how and whether such findings can be extrapolated to humans. Most BPA research has been centered on early-life exposure in animals, linking low doses of BPA administered early in life — prenatal, pre-pubertal or a combination of the two — to an increased risk of mammary cancer later in life.
Researchers in the present study stated “We found the lower doses of BPA to be capable of activating several growth-factor-receptor pathways that previously have been implicated in cancer. (2)”
So since darn near EVERYTHING is plastic these days what can we do? I say start with what you can easily do and reduce exposure any way you can. For example, I do NOT microwave anything in plastic any more. I’ve been reading that microwaving things in plastic can leech out BPA into the food at higher concentrations. So instead I use glass or ceramic or corning ware.
Reduce your overall exposure to food and drink packaged in plastic. I don’t think we will ever be perfect but I believe the overall message when I read all the data is this problem is one of continued, low-level exposure. It’s tiny tiny amounts that enter our bodies but it’s daily over years and years of exposure.
Halo Effect – What is It?
So you engage in your body transformation and you’re successful. You stay engaged in your program (This is what I call DANCE WITH THE ONE WHO BROUGHT YA) and you notice that while you’ve lost 35 pounds and have kept it off for a year some of your family have also lost weight, a few of your closest friends and even a colleague or two at work. They didn’t do your program but they still lost some weight. Why is that? Well, it might just be what’s known as the “halo effect.”
“When behavior changes as a result of social-reinforcing conditions, it is sometimes known as a halo effect. For example, studies have found that people are more likely to quit smoking if their spouses quit, or become obese if a friend becomes obese (5).”
So while it may not come as a surprise to learn of this there is research that supports, pretty consistently, that the halo effect is real and you really can be a positive influence on your REAL social network – not the fake one over at Facebook. Some in research circles call this the halo effect. I call it pretty cool.
4. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 19 (2011) 1150e1157