The Digest - March 26

Leaving you with a few more to read over the weekend, especially the first one:  

  • The first ever major statistic review reveals that adherence to the USDA dietary guidelines is linked to dramatic rise in obesity.
  • Thinking of buying a “jogging stroller”? Here are some suggestions.
  • Insight into hydration for hot weather endurance training.
  • Most common posture problems causing you all sorts of pains and niggles and how to fix them.
  • Another punch in the gut for antibiotics: linked to increased risk of Type II Diabetes.
  • All you need to know about “seeds”. 


  • Bombshell! Well if you've been reading my writing over the past 2 years, then this revelation would not really constitute a bombshell… The official USDA dietary recommendations linked to the dramatic rise in obesity in the US over the past few decades! Let’s recap quickly: official dietary guidelines were put forward in the early 1960s based on the theory (and until today still a “theory”) that consuming fat increases risk of heart disease. So the USDA dietary recommendations were to reduce fat and increase carbohydrates. In the first ever statistical review of its kind, a study was published in the peer-reviewed Nutrition journal revealing that adherence to the USDA dietary recommendations are associated with the significant rise in obesity (and accompanying problems such as diabetes and heart disease). The highlights of the findings here as follows: 
    • Americans have been adhering to federal dietary guidelines for the past 40 years, 
    • Fat consumption by U.S. adults has decreased from 45% to 34%between 1965 and 2011, 
    • Carbohydrate consumption has increased from 39% to 51% over this same period, 
    • There is a high correlation between the change in diet and the rise of obesity, 
    • The percentage of overweight adults has increased from 42% to 66% since 1971.^


  • I’m not speaking from personal experience (yet) but I've been told that having children shouldn't stop you from engaging in physical activity, including running… To help make things a bit easier, this running stroller appears to have all the bells and whistles needed to go for a run with your babies and toddlers… and it’s Ironman (triathlon, not Tony Stark!) branded, so what’s not to like! And to help make your run a little smoother, here are some tips on how to run properly when pushing a stroller.^


  • It’s starting to really warm up here in Dubai, and the humidity is starting to creep up. We’re all still ramping training for the European racing season so dealing with the heat and humidity is critical for both performance and staying healthy. Last year I wrote a piece about hydration for hot weather training, and it’s probably a good time to refresh our memories on such things. In addition, here is a good article published by Trainingpeaks on pre-race day hydration.^


  • Bad posture is much more commonly associated with various pains (neck, shoulders, back, hips) than even lack of exercise. In fact, studies have shown that people who do exercise regularly but adopt bad posture during the rest of the day are at an even higher risk of developing pains and injuries. Here are the most common postural mistakes and how to easily become aware of them and fix them (at work, at home, on the street, etc). The one I see most commonly when observing people throughout the day is the anterior pelvic shift, which is a primary cause of back pain.^


  • Antibiotics have been getting a bad rep in the medical research community recently, and with good reason: overuse of antibiotics is rampant, doctors prescribe them without even confirming bacterial infections, and this has resulted in a significant increase in antibiotic resistant bacteriaweakening of the immune systemdysbiosis in the gut microflora, and so on… And now, a large study involving over 1 million people in the UK was just released showing that repeated use of antibiotics may increase risk of Type II Diabetes.^


  • Did you enjoy last week’s “definitive guide to nuts”? Here’s its counterpart: definitive guide to seeds”. I’m personally a huge fan of both nuts and seeds and consider them a staple in my diet..^