There was a big splash that you may recall when some professors in California went public claiming that “high protein diets (especially animal fat) are as bad for your health as smoking.” (Just google “protein smoking” and you’ll find scads of similar links.)
Attached is a letter to the editor of the journal that actually published the study, basically discrediting it. This came via Drew Baye, one of my favorite high intensity exercise advocates. I hope the study was an honest attempt at good science, but there is a constant temptation in our culture to go for fame and notoriety and scientists are definitely not immune.
PaleoPathologist found near his cave, absorbing UV light to make some natural Vitamin D. Man are those some feet or what?
PaleoPathMate and PaleoPathologist spent a week in Seattle with PaleoDaughter and PaleoGrandson. We rented a basement apartment and man did we sleep a lot. Between 8.5 and 10 hours a night. Naps in the afternoon. It was great. It also was great to see the western branch of the Clan. PaleoGrandson is bursting with energy!
Back in the PathCave at Porter, after only 7.5 hours of sleep (FitBit measured!) and no less than two other articles came at me on sleep and circadian rhythms. They do such a nice job of summarizing the evidence that PaleoPathologist is going to cite them and go back to his work! They are a nice addition to the previous article in my series on rhythms.
First is a new site that I’m enjoying, ThePaleoMom.com. She is a PhD just like PaleoPathologist and left her research career to do a vital job–raising her kids. Her posts are filled with good science and I’m enjoying reading them. Take a look at her recent one on sleep.
Second is Chris Kresser’s site. He is also quite thoughtful on “paleo” issues and worth reading. His email came through just a couple of hours ago announcing his post on…sleep. Sometimes PaleoPathologist can’t help wondering if multiple messages coming through all at once might represent some kind of supernatural whisper? Like “Hey, dork, why only 7.5 hours last night? You have ten fingers, can’t you count?”
What are you doing to get not only minimum, but luxurious amounts of sleep?
One of the interesting side effects of our modern tendency to reduce ourselves to very complex machines is to take the metaphor a bit too far. If I turn on my PC at work and leave it on for two weeks it just keeps going and going like the Eveready Bunny. So if we just work it right, can’t WE just keep on going at a steady pace too? We’re just complex machines, right? Um. No. We don’t work that way, do we? Steady state is for computers, not for humans. Our very biology is based on rhythms.
Tony Schwartz writes in “The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working” that our design is to expend energy and then to rebuild it. He references studies by Ericsson on high performers in music, chess, and athletics; none of the world class performers practice hard more than 4 hours/day and they also take breaks each 60-90 minutes. Work, rest, work, rest. Oh, and the very best? They sleep 8-9 hours/day.
So what are these rhythms? What is the time period–daily, weekly, monthly, yearly? More often?
This weekend PaleoPathologist joined a bunch of other docs at a retreat to discuss nasty things like burnout, and good things like how to take better care of yourself. (We docs aren’t great about taking good care of ourselves.)
In particular we don’t sleep enough. Docs are famous for this and consider it a badge of honor to not sleep enough.
It’s not smart. We become less efficient. Here is a short video by a former Navy Seal (they also think sleep is for the weak) about sleep’s importance.
More to come…