Keeping Up with Current and Not-So-Current Research (August 2022)

Research can provide important information to health and fitness professionals, but trying to keep up with it all can be overwhelming! Not to worry, I’ve done the legwork for you. Here are some current and not-so-current findings that I think you’ll find interesting.


Sleep in a Cave

“These results demonstrate that a single night of exposure to room light during sleep can impair glucose homeostasis, potentially via increased sympathetic nervous system activation. Attention to avoiding exposure to light at night during sleep may be beneficial for cardiometabolic health.” Source

Note: Unfortunately, a sleep mask is not enough to reduce the detrimental effect of light exposure during sleep. Skin is sensitive to light. Research has shown that even a small amount of light shone behind the knee can have a negative impact on melatonin levels. You can discover many more Sleep Thieves in Stanley Coren’s classic text. For now, check out these 3 tips to improve your sleep.

Resist Aging

“Preliminary evidence reveals that resistance training can be effective for improving most domains of quality of life, upper- and lower-limb muscle strength, handgrip strength, and depression in aged people.” Source

Note: Here’s some more evidence that strength training is the fountain of youth!

Sticks, Stones, and Plants

“Vegetarian women were at a higher risk of hip fracture compared to regular meat-eaters.” Source

Note: An increase in the rate of cardiovascular disease is another risk that vegetarians face.

It’s Time to Step Up

“Compared with the low-step count population, the high-step count population had a 62% lower risk of all-cause death.” Source

Note: Ten-minute walks and sprint snacks are a great way to get in your steps when time is limited.

Let Food be Thy Medicine

“Extensive research has demonstrated the efficacy of the low carbohydrate diet (LCD) to improve the most robust cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors, such as hyperglycemia, hypertension, and atherogenic dyslipidemia. Our review of the literature indicates that statin therapy for both primary and secondary prevention of CVD is not warranted for individuals on an LCD with elevated low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) who have achieved a low triglyceride/HDL ratio.” Source

Note: Here’s a story of someone who felt “a million times better” when he would occasionally forget to take his cholesterol medication!

An Apple a Day, Not Four!

“The results of the present study indicated that consumption of fruits more than 4 servings/day exacerbates steatosis, dyslipidemia, and glycemic control in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease patients.” Source

Note: I’ve said it many times in the past, vegetables have all the benefits of fruit without the sugar, but that doesn’t mean that I’m anti-fruit! Here’s how I use fruit along with some key supplements before, during, and after my workouts.

Seven Hours of Sleep is Optimal

“we identified a nonlinear association between sleep, with approximately 7 h as the optimal sleep duration” Source

Note: In Lights Out, T.S. Wiley and Bent Formby recommend 9-plus hours of sleep a night for optimal health, but this recent study suggests otherwise. Just like exercise, too much of a good thing can be bad!

The Food Compass Points in the Wrong Direction

“we propose that the chosen algorithm is not well justified and produces results that fail to discriminate for common shortfall nutrients, exaggerate the risks associated with animal-source foods and underestimate the risks associated with ultra-processed foods” Source

Note: A previous study indicates that cereal grains can contribute to the manifestation of chronic inflammation and autoimmune diseases and some experts even consider cereal as modern-day candy, and since almonds don’t have breasts, don’t fall into the almond milk trap either!


A Supplement You Should Take Everyday

“Among U.S. adults, multi-vitamin/multi-mineral supplements use is associated with decreased micronutrient inadequacies, intakes slightly exceeding the tolerable upper intake level for a few nutrients, and a lower risk of nutrient deficiencies.” Source

Note: Make sure to take high-quality supplements. Here’s the Essential Multivitamin that I recommend and this is what to look for in a prenatal multivitamin.

Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals in Bottled Water

“We detected significant antiestrogenicity in 13 of 18 products. 16 samples were antiandrogenic inhibiting the androgen receptor by up to 90%.” Source

Note: As I discuss in Lean & Mean, it’s best to use filtered water with added sea salt.

Not Soy Good For You

“Our main findings demonstrate that 14 days of supplementation with soy protein does appear to partially blunt serum testosterone.” Source

Note: To boost testosterone levels from the food you eat, consume plenty of animal proteins and fats as well as cruciferous vegetables on a regular basis, do the occasional testosterone juice, and stay away from soy.

Toxic Paper Cups

“Ingestion of microplastics, ions, and heavy metals regularly while consuming our daily dose of hot beverages like tea and coffee can expose us to potential health risks in the future.” Source

Note: This is my daily coffee ritual and it does not involve disposable paper cups!

BPS is Not a Healthier Alternative

“It was found that BPS works via different pathways than does BPA while causing equivalent obesogenic effects, such as activating preadipocytes, and that BPS was correlated with metabolic disorders, such as gestational diabetes, that BPA was not correlated with. BPS was also shown to be more toxic to the reproductive system than BPA and was shown to hormonally promote certain breast cancers at the same rate as BPA. Therefore, a strong argument may be made to regulate BPS in exactly the same manner as BPA.” Source

Note: I’m a big fan of leftover dinner for breakfast, but don’t store your food in a plastic container. Here’s what you should do instead.

Don’t Forget to Floss Your Hamstrings

“Flossing on hamstring muscles is more beneficial than dynamic stretching with respect to increasing range of motion and muscle exertion.” Source

Note: Another way to significantly increase hamstring range of motion is to use the closed chain stretch demonstrated in the video below.

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