Abstract: Western diet caused cancer in mice, low carb diet did not

A low carbohydrate, high protein diet slows tumor growth and prevents cancer initiation.
Cancer Res. 2011 Jul 1;71(13):4484-93. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-10-3973. Epub 2011 Jun 14.

Since cancer cells depend on glucose more than normal cells, we compared the effects of low carbohydrate (CHO) diets to a Western diet on the growth rate of tumors in mice. To avoid caloric restriction-induced effects, we designed the low CHO diets isocaloric with the Western diet by increasing protein rather than fat levels because of the reported tumor-promoting effects of high fat and the immune-stimulating effects of high protein. We found that both murine and human carcinomas grew slower in mice on diets containing low amylose CHO and high protein compared with a Western diet characterized by relatively high CHO and low protein. There was no weight difference between the tumor-bearing mice on the low CHO or Western diets. Additionally, the low CHO-fed mice exhibited lower blood glucose, insulin, and lactate levels. Additive antitumor effects with the low CHO diets were observed with the mTOR inhibitor CCI-779 and especially with the COX-2 inhibitor Celebrex, a potent anti-inflammatory drug. Strikingly, in a genetically engineered mouse model of HER-2/neu-induced mammary cancer, tumor penetrance in mice on a Western diet was nearly 50% by the age of 1 year whereas no tumors were detected in mice on the low CHO diet. This difference was associated with weight gains in mice on the Western diet not observed in mice on the low CHO diet. Moreover, whereas only 1 mouse on the Western diet achieved a normal life span, due to cancer-associated deaths, more than 50% of the mice on the low CHO diet reached or exceeded the normal life span. Taken together, our findings offer a compelling preclinical illustration of the ability of a low CHO diet in not only restricting weight gain but also cancer development and progression. (emphasis added)

©2011 AACR.

"Chairs are a recent invention"

"Chairs are a recent invention. Folks as early as the ancient Egyptians had them, but they were a luxury item reserved for the upper classes. Your average Neolithic human sat on chests or benches until chairs became a mass-produced staple that everyone could afford. Earlier than that, for most of human history, formal-sitting furniture simply didn’t exist. Paleolithic posteriors surely rested upon rocks and logs and stumps when the opportunity arose, but those aren’t the same as having permanent fixtures that allow you to take a load off whenever you want. Human bodies were not designed with chairs in mind. We did do a lot of lounging around – I’m not arguing we never stopped moving or anything – but we did so on the ground, rather than on a bunch of folding chairs.”

Read more: Floor Living: Do You Spend Enough Time on the Ground?

Richard Riemerschmid: Chair; Oak solid wood with leather upholstery; Design for a Music Room at the German Art Exhibition in Dresden in 1899. Source: Wikimedia

Richard Riemerschmid: Chair; Oak solid wood with leather upholstery; Design for a Music Room at the German Art Exhibition in Dresden in 1899. Source: Wikimedia

More evidence farming led to weaker bones

It's been known for sometime that farming led weaker bones and an shorter stature. Now comes further evidence from research by Alison Macintosh:

"Because the structure of human bones can inform us about the lifestyles of the individuals they belong to, they can provide valuable clues for biological anthropologists looking at past cultures. Research by Alison Macintosh, a PhD candidate in Cambridge University’s Department of Archaeology and Anthropology, shows that after the emergence of agriculture in Central Europe from around 5300 BC, the bones of those living in the fertile soils of the Danube river valley became progressively less strong, pointing to a decline in mobility and loading." (emphasis added)

Source: From athletes to couch potatoes: Humans through 6,000 years of farming

Jets of water vapor & ice on Saturn's moon Enceladus

Water & ice spewing from Saturn's moon Enceladus in this 2005 Cassini spacecraft image. Credit: NASA/JPL/SSI; Mosaic: Emily Lakdawalla

Water & ice spewing from Saturn's moon Enceladus in this 2005 Cassini spacecraft image. Credit: NASA/JPL/SSIMosaic: Emily Lakdawalla

"Ever since the Cassini spacecraft first spied water vapor and ice spewing from fractures in Enceladus’ frozen surface in 2005, scientists have hypothesized that a large reservoir of water lies beneath that icy surface, possibly fueling the plumes. Now, gravity measurements gathered by Cassini have confirmed that this enticing moon of Saturn does in fact harbor a large subsurface ocean near its south pole."

Learn more: Cassini Spacecraft Confirms Subsurface Ocean on Enceladus

Abstract: What's your diet?

"Population-based studies have consistently shown that our diet has an influence on health. Therefore, the aim of our study was to analyze differences between different dietary habit groups in terms of health-related variables. The sample used for this cross-sectional study was taken from the Austrian Health Interview Survey AT-HIS 2006/07. In a first step, subjects were matched according to their age, sex, and socioeconomic status (SES). After matching, the total number of subjects included in the analysis was 1320 (N=330 for each form of diet – vegetarian, carnivorous diet rich in fruits and vegetables, carnivorous diet less rich in meat, and carnivorous diet rich in meat). Analyses of variance were conducted controlling for lifestyle factors in the following domains: health (self-assessed health, impairment, number of chronic conditions, vascular risk), health care (medical treatment, vaccinations, preventive check-ups), and quality of life. In addition, differences concerning the presence of 18 chronic conditions were analyzed by means of Chi-square tests. Overall, 76.4% of all subjects were female. 40.0% of the individuals were younger than 30 years, 35.4% between 30 and 49 years, and 24.0% older than 50 years. 30.3% of the subjects had a low SES, 48.8% a middle one, and 20.9% had a high SES. Our results revealed that a vegetarian diet is related to a lower BMI and less frequent alcohol consumption. Moreover, our results showed that a vegetarian diet is associated with poorer health (higher incidences of cancer, allergies, and mental health disorders), a higher need for health care, and poorer quality of life. Therefore, public health programs are needed in order to reduce the health risk due to nutritional factors." (bold added)

Reference: Nutrition and Health – The Association between Eating Behavior and Various Health Parameters: A Matched Sample Study

See also: Here We Go Again: Vegetarian Diets and Mental Health by Emily Deans, MD

Abstract: Non Celiac Gluten sensitivity (NCGS)

"Non Celiac Gluten sensitivity (NCGS) was originally described in the 1980s and recently a “re-discovered” disorder characterized by intestinal and extra-intestinal symptoms related to the ingestion of gluten-containing food, in subjects that are not affected with either celiac disease (CD) or wheat allergy (WA). Although NCGS frequency is still unclear, epidemiological data have been generated that can help establishing the magnitude of the problem. Clinical studies further defined the identity of NCGS and its implications in human disease. An overlap between the irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and NCGS has been detected, requiring even more stringent diagnostic criteria. Several studies suggested a relationship between NCGS and neuropsychiatric disorders, particularly autism and schizophrenia. The first case reports of NCGS in children have been described. Lack of biomarkers is still a major limitation of clinical studies, making it difficult to differentiate NCGS from other gluten related disorders. Recent studies raised the possibility that, beside gluten, wheat amylase-trypsin inhibitors and low-fermentable, poorly-absorbed, short-chain carbohydrates can contribute to symptoms (at least those related to IBS) experienced by NCGS patients. In this paper we report the major advances and current trends on NCGS."(bold added)

Reference: Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity: The New Frontier of Gluten Related Disorders

Primal Palate launches myKitchen phone app


"We are extremely pleased to announce the launch of our iPhone & Android app, called myKitchen! We have been working closely with our development team for nearly 4 months to bring you this highly interactive paleo meal planning app that you can take anywhere with you. myKitchen can work alone, or as a companion app to your account on The Food Lovers Kitchen. The recipes you save as favorites on the website will automatically sync to the app on your phone (and vice versa!) That means that you can browse our website on your computer and then when you go to the store, you’ll have everything at your fingertips on your phone with the myKitchen app: our entire catalogue of recipes, your saved recipes, a customizable meal planner, and it will even generate shopping lists for you.myKitchen is the easiest way to take your favorite Paleo, Primal, and Gluten-free recipes with you wherever you go. You can save your favorite recipes, create daily meal plans and unique menus, and even generate shopping lists."

Source: http://www.primalpalate.com/paleo-products/mykitchen-app/

Tesla Gigafactory: Making high-end battery powered cars affordable

“Very shortly, we will be ready to share more information about the Tesla Gigafactory. This will allow us to achieve a major reduction in the cost of our battery packs and accelerate the pace of battery innovation. Working in partnership with our suppliers, we plan to integrate precursor material, cell, module and pack production into one facility. With this facility, we feel highly confident of being able to create a compelling and affordable electric car in approximately three years. This will also allow us to address the solar power industry’s need for a massive volume of stationary battery packs.”

Read more at http://cleantechnica.com/2014/02/23/will-telsa-build-gigafactory/#iXlHivbtRi2d6cbj.99

Western diet looses. Causes cancer in mice.

Western diet is heavy on grains. High carb diet caused cancer in mice. Image: Afonin

Western diet is heavy on grains. High carb diet caused cancer in mice. Image: Afonin

In a study published in Cancer Research, researchers compared the development of tumors in mice on the Western diet or on a low carb diet. The Western diet promoted tumor growth.


"Since cancer cells depend on glucose more than normal cells, we compared the effects of low carbohydrate (CHO) diets to a Western diet on the growth rate of tumors in mice."


"Strikingly, in a genetically engineered mouse model of HER-2/neu-induced mammary cancer, tumor penetrance in mice on a Western diet was nearly 50% by the age of 1 year whereas no tumors were detected in mice on the low CHO diet."

Learn more: A low carbohydrate, high protein diet slows tumor growth and prevents cancer initiation.

Extreme weather images paralyze effective action

New research has shown that images of extreme weather in the media create negative emotional meanings and might lead to disengagement with the issue of climate change. The images symbolised fear, helplessness and vulnerability and, in some cases, guilt and compassion. Appealing to fear of disaster can lead to denial and paralysis rather than positive behaviour change. (emphasis added)

Extreme weather images in the media cause fear and disengagement with climate change

Book: The Primal Connection


"AN ADVANCE NOTICE: THIS IS not a book about living a more gracious life. Nor is it written to stir sentimentality or foster sophistication. On the contrary, it’s an endeavor best undertaken with the sleeves rolled up. Prepare to get your hands dirty. We’ll be digging down to the rudiments. It’s about unearthing something in ourselves that has been lost, buried, or obscured. It’s about reconnecting with the less acknowledged, let alone less appreciated, layers of ourselves. It’s about getting to the very essence of what makes us human and tapping into our genetic recipe for health, happiness, and fulfillment."

Mark Sisson
The Primal Connection: Follow Your Genetic Blueprint to Health and Happiness

Added sugar associated with risk of dying from heart disease

Image: Downtowngal

Image: Downtowngal

In a study published in the February 2014 issue of JAMA Internal Medicine researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Emory University, and the Harvard School of Public Health analyzed two health database with a total of with 42,880 cases (31,147 for the time trend analysis and 11 ,733 for the association study) to determine the association between the amount of added sugar intake and mortality from cardiovascular.

According to the study abstract, from 2005-2010 most adults consumed 10% or more of calories from added sugar (71.4%) and approximately 10% consumed 25%.”

Researchers compared “participants who consumed 10.0% to 24.9% or 25.0% or more calories from added sugar with those who consumed less than 10.0% of calories from added sugar.”

As summarized by Rachael Rettner, Senior Writer for Live Science, “people who consumed between 17 and 21 percent of their daily calories from added sugar were nearly 40 percent more likely to die from cardiovascular disease over a 14-year period than those who consumed about 8 percent of their daily calories from added sugar.

Where does sugar reside? In addition to soda, packaged foods are the main culprit. In a comment in the JAMA Internal Medicine issue, Dr. Laura A. Schmidt of University of California, San Francisco fingered packaged foods:

“…77 percent of them have sugar added to them. For example, it’s added to breads, it’s added to bagels, it’s added to ketchup, it’s added to salad dressing … Foods you think are quite savory tasting have sugar added to them. So it makes it very hard for the consumer to know when they’re getting too much sugar.”

The study's conclusions:

“Most US adults consume more added sugar than is recommended for a healthy diet. We observed a significant relationship between added sugar consumption and increased risk for CVD mortality.”

In summary, added sugar is associated with an increased risk of dying from heart disease. While association is not causation, the study does provide support for diets that shun processed foods such as the Paleo diet. More importantly, it may increase the medical community's attention to further studies on the effects of added sugar in out diet. 


Shift work and Earth's rotation

Eight days from Earth, the Galileo spacecraft turned its camera toward home. 

Eight days from Earth, the Galileo spacecraft turned its camera toward home. 

We evolved on Earth. Simple enough, yet we usually don’t consider how attuned we are to its rhythms, especially its rotation with its night and day cycles. When we are out of rhythm with natural cycles, we are “misaligned.” The metabolic effects of misalignment with the Earths rotation, our circadian rhythms, have been studied in shift workers. However, some of health detriments were attributed to loss of sleep, a frequent accompaniment to of an irregular work schedule.

Researchers from Chicago, IL, Brussels, Belgium and Uppsala, Sweden designed a study to determine if circadian misalignment without sleep loss increases inflammation and the risk of diabetes. Their goal and study population:

“To determine whether the misalignment of circadian rhythms that typically occurs in shift work involves intrinsic adverse metabolic effects independently of sleep loss, twenty-six healthy adults were studied using a parallel group design.”

Published in Diabetes on January 23, the study revealed:

“Circadian misalignment as occurs in shift work may increase diabetes risk and inflammation, independently of sleep loss.”

Take home point: Being out of rhythm with the Earths rotation may be an independent risk factor for the development of inflammation and diabetes.

Source:  Circadian misalignment augments markers of insulin resistance and inflammation, independently of sleep loss

The Ice of Pio Once


“Where are they going,” I asked the bartender, a portly man with a round head and arms that, propped up by his belly, stuck out at his sides. When the glacier Pio Once had appeared on the horizon, he had put on his jacket, and then left his post. Now he stood on the second level of the ship, beside a lifeboat containing three men that was being lowered into the channel. He was going to ignore my comment, until he noticed me staring at him from where I stood at the third level’s railing. “To buy the newspaper,” he said, and we both laughed. Around us dark mountains rose into the clouds, while chunks of ice that had fallen from Pio Once speckled the channel’s frigid water. “Adíos,” one of the men solemnly called as the lifeboat disappeared from my sight.

I walked to the front of the ship, where the tourists were crowded, taking pictures of Pio Once, a looming wall of luminous blue ice, broken into jagged segments, like the crooked teeth of a frost giant. It was one of the few glaciers in the world that was still growing, adding about five hundred meters per year. Beginning at the base of a volcano, it was slowly making its way into the channel, which, if its growth continued, it would one day choke in its icy grip. A stern wind blew off the smooth slope of Pio Once, hurling the light rain that was falling against the passengers’ faces and cameras.

Once the cold in my hands and feet became greater than my desire to behold the glacier, I went inside and took a seat in the lounge. The bartender was back, serving beers and pisco sours to the passengers who had also had their fill of natural beauty. After half an hour, one of the men I had seen on the lifeboat appeared. I recognized him by the orange coverall he wore, and the hunk of ice he cradled in his arms. As I watched, he took it behind the bar, and then dropped it in the ice bin, where the bartender immediately set to work chopping it into manageable pieces.

I was amused. When I saw the lifeboat being lowered, I had no idea what the men aboard were doing, but I had assumed that it was important. Perhaps they were going to take measurements or collect samples. The captain had told us that when he was not sailing, he taught a class at Santiago University. I had even momentarily thought they were going to buy a newspaper, though my stark surroundings – the thick forests, broken only by white cascades – quickly persuaded me that the chances of a newsstand being out here were zero. Until I saw that man walk into the bar carrying a translucent piece of ice the size of a small child, it could never have occurred to me that three sailors would brave the freezing waters of this channel for nothing more than so that they could later make drinks with the ice of Pio Once.

John Michael Oró

For more on the Patagonia trip search "Patagonia" in the search box. 

Hu kitchen: A new Paleo restaurant in New York City


"The jury is in on the shortcomings of the Western diet and the benefits of pre-industrial food; reams have been written about the pressing need to change the way we eat. The moment is ripe. People are hungry to get started, yet no one is doing much about it. The space is still dominated by the same two players. On one side, there are the cynical profiteers of the food industry who have hijacked words like "healthy" and "natural" so they can stick them on the labels of their latest lab creations. On the other side, there are the rigid, alienating food fascists who insist that everything we eat should taste as unpleasant as possible. That doesn’t work for us. We have a different idea - unequivocally delicious food that also happens to be unprocessed and good for you. Is that even possible?"

Learn more: Hu kitchen

Seahawks vs. Broncos: Paleo vs. Standard Diet?

After watching the Seattle Seahawks painfully dominate the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII, I was struck by the explosive nature of the Seahawks. They applied constant pressure on Manning and seemed to burst out of nowhere to quickly surround nearly every Bronco that ran or caught the ball. Puzzled, I wondered about each team’s diet. A quick, non-scientific search led to the following (emphasis added):

Seattle Seahawks

In an article published in the Seattle Times on January 8, Tan Vinh discusses the Seattle Seahawks’ diet with team chef Mac McNabb. The diet appears to be mostly Paleo:

eggs, … 60 dozen a week … whipped eggs for omelets

burrito …” “Gourmet, luxurious stuff”

tortilla stuffed with organic veggies, organic sausage and free-range eggs

egg-white omelet, this time with chicken sausage, mushroom, onion and cheddar, topped with a dollop of salsa

“smoked a 24-pound turkey, made gallons of smoothies, baked organic blueberry scones and endless trays of bacon and organic chorizo

“team goes through 50 pounds of fish and 60 pounds of beef every week”

fresh-fruit buffet

salmon entrée

“all organic and premium meat — grass-fed beef, free-range chicken — and few if any genetically modified foods”

salmon teriyaki, smoked briskets and what may be the most decadent gumbo in the city, brimming with medallion-size scallops, cod, salmon, mussels, clams all fresh or wild caught — along with andouille sausage

turkey burgers

pistachio-crusted Ono fish

Hawaiian BBQ

“chicken from Popeyes, which the team gets on Friday when lunch is catered”

“beverage aisle of a convenience store with rows of water, V-8 juices and yogurts

“Snacks are jerkys and granola bars stacked in plastic bins labeled “buffalo,” “turkey” and “honey sunflower seeds.”

“No sodas or junk food, but there are fresh-baked cookies on Thursdays.”

“No deep-fried food made in the kitchen. Even French fries are baked.”

“For post-practice, when McNabb puts out a pasta station, many players will shun a carb-loaded meal for something lighter.”

Vinh concludes:

“The days of seeing players like former defensive tackle Chad Eaton eat three, 22-ounce porterhouse steaks in one sitting are few and far between.”

“Take safety Kam Chancellor. At a recent breakfast, sporting a red Air Jordan hoodie and headphones, the 6-foot-3, 230-pound defender strolled in at 7:30, skipping the eggs and bacon for a bowl of oatmeal with brown sugar.”

“And quarterback Wilson had the most sensible (though maybe not the most appetizing) breakfast of the bunch. He grabbed a modest bowl of steel-cut oats, the portion size more fitting for a runway model. He then took a bowl of grapes and headed to the film room instead of mingling with teammates. He circled back later to request one fried duck egg.”

Denver Broncos

On the DenverBroncos.com site Stuart Zaas talks with linebacker Von Miller “about the importance of nutrition.” In the article team Nutritionist Brian Snyder provides an overview of the Broncos diet. With its carbohydrate focus, it is more representative of the standard modern diet:

“Typically, at the hotel I usually don’t vary the menu up too much because guys like consistency. We usually have a pretty good variety of pastas, proteins, cornbread, starches – it’s very carbohydrate focused with lean sources of protein and then at the stadium I have my normal snack table full of Gatorade bars. Guys like their routine. During the week I’ll change up the menu quite a bit but pregame I try to keep it consistent.”


Sugar & bread take a hit in popular press

Bread image: Veganbaking.net

Bread image: Veganbaking.net

A recent ABC News article lists 7 reasons to give up sugar, most not surprising to Paleo & Primal advocates. Author Leah Zerbeh quotes Robert Lustig, MD, Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology at University of California, San Francisco. Among the 7 reasons to avoid added sugar -

It tricks your brain

The Facts: Eating too much added sugar allows the fructose found in sugar and high-fructose corn syrup to send your hunger hormones into a tailspin. The hormonal messages that tell your brain you’re full aren’t properly triggered, tricking your system into thinking you haven’t eaten, Dr. Lustig explains.

Where Sugar Lurks: Surprisingly, in bread—and not just white bread, either. Multigrain and whole wheat generally contain about 2 grams of added sugar per slice.”

It accelerates aging

The Facts: “Sugar is a primary contributor to the aging process,” Dr. Lustic explains. He says fructose, the sweet molecule in sugar, is seven times more potent than the glucose portion of sugar, forming oxygen radicals, leading to higher rates of cell damage and death, and contributing to chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and heart disease. It speeds along the aging process in general.

Where Sugar Lurks: You wouldn’t guess it, but added sugar hides out in most tomato sauces. “The problem is that the Institute of Medicine, United States Department of Agriculture, and Food and Drug Administration refuse to list a Dietary Reference Intake—a maximum—for sugar consumption,” Dr. Lustig says. “That gives the food industry license to put any amount into any food they want. With no Daily Recommended Intake, you can’t know if you’re over the top.”

Learn more:  7 Surprising Reasons to Give Up Sugar (ABC)

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