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Saturday, October 28, 2017

Aerobic Isometrics podcast on Paleo Quick tip of the Day

One of the most productive and efficient ways to work out is using something called aerobic isometrics.  It actually sounds contradictory, for after all isn’t isometric exercise working against an immovable object for time?  And isn’t aerobics moving the body at a steady state for a longer period of time?

Yes and yes.  But they actually come together very well, and when done this way they are an incredibly good, and safe way to really get fit!  And a real fitness, that combines the cardio system and the strength building of the muscles together very effectively! 

Let’s try it first in the classic pull-up or chin-up.  Either use a low hanging bar or tree branch- (hey- you’re paleo, aren’t you caveman?)- or else place a stool that lets you extend your arms fully, while standing on your stool (or stump).  Anyway, the idea is that you support your weight on your legs, but then you put more and more weight on your hands and arms.  Slowly squat down, giving just enough help from your legs to go up and down in a chin-up.  Go very slowly- it helps to have a clock in front of you with a sweep second hand.  I like to go slowly up and down for a full minute- perhaps I wind up doing about 5 chins, maybe more.  Sometimes, I go so slowly that I only do 1. or two chins or pull-ups over the course of a minute, or sometimes a minute and a half.

If you think these are easy, because your legs are “helping”, they definitely are not!  You should only be helping with your legs enough to actually move slowly- no more.  Often, on the negative motion I will lift my knees off of the support, and do a slow negative chin.  It is quite taxing to do the exercise this way, and it really taxes and builds the entire back and biceps, along with the cardiovascular system!  You will only need to do 1 rep, trust me.

You can do the same thing with dips, helping with your legs on a dip rack.  Excellent exercise, in fact if you do these two exercises, dips and chins, you are getting your whole upper body worked very effectively indeed!  And it is very, very safe- if the exercise gets too hard, just put your feet down and help.  And so time efficient, it only takes a few minutes.

You can also do a pushup as an aerobic isometric: Get in the forward pushup plank position, and slowly lower yourself downwards.  You won’t be able to go upwards slowly enough, so just get to the top position after you hit bottom, and do another slow, slow negative.  Depending on how slow you make yourself go, you will only be able to do a few reps, but those reps will equal dozens done in standard fashion, both for muscle building and aerobically.

If you have a power rack, or “cage” as I do, left over from my misguided heavy weight lifting days, why then you are golden indeed my friend!  I have a whole routine that I do weekly using my rack, pushing against the steel pins of the rack, and letting my legs help me “just enough” to go up and down.  One is the military press for a minute, (very grueling).  I use a wooden dowel, that I press against the pin above my head, and slowly dip my legs down as I press really hard upwards against that down.  This one is great for both legs and shoulders!

One tip on that last- counter to how most do military or upright presses, you should not put your arms out to shoulder width and press directly upwards- no one naturally lifts this way, and it is hard on your precious shoulder joints.  Instead, grasp the dowel about 12-15 inches apart, above your head, as if you were lifting a baby overhead.  This is how we lift real loads above our heads in the natural world- the paleo world!

So try it out.  If you do have a access to a power rack, or perhaps a playground set of some sort, you can experiment with reverse curls into the pins, working legs and arms together.  And grip work using the immovable dowel is amazing as well- when is the last time working your grip made you breathless as well as muscularly tired?

I also like hack squats, leaning far back with both hands grasping the sides of the rack, and one-legged squats using the rack for support.  There’s lots you can do!  But to really get the Perfectly Paleo Workout, finish up with leg raises for your abs, raising your legs straight out in front to eye height, and then go to your gymnastic rings.  Pound out a few hundred pushups, in sets of 20, 15, and 10, interspersed with ring flies.  Trust me, it will feel great- you are oxygenating your whole body with blood, which is the last thing you might need after your Aerobic Isometrics to have a truly great workout! 

Check out this episode!

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Bone Broth and Kidney Stones- podcast

Chanca Piedra

And so is chanca piedra, which I promised I would mention after my previous podcast about my kidney stone!

Now, these two items- bone broth and kidney stones are related, so stay tuned and I will explain.  I got my kidney stone from, I believe now, actually overdosing on spinach for years and years!  Contrary to popular belief, spinach has gotten a “halo of virtue”, and we all think it is nothing but loads of beneficial vitamins and minerals, all in a pretty green package.  But it also has oxalates, which are a chemical or ester that protects the spinach plant.  And the wheat plant, the rhubarb, the raspberry- in fact, many plants that we tend to regard as all good!  

They’re not.  And if you, like me now, have ever experienced the utter pain of a kidney stone, you will realize that.  But in addition, this chemical, which is stored away in the form of calcium crystals throughout the body of those of us mammals that dare to eat the plant that contains them, can cause all sorts of pain and illness in the human body.  

From joint pains, to tooth and bone density issues, to sleep troubles and digestive issues!  Oxalates are like gluten and gliaden- insidious, harmful, and hard to track or trace.  Kidney stones are just one of the more obvious contamination issues.  But I have two suggestions for you:

First- get rid of your kidney stone, if you have one, as fast as possible- pass by the urologist and the incredible pain and expense he will offer you, and order a bottle of chanca piedra for about $12.  Take a dropper full in each of the many, many glasses of water you should also be drinking to get rid of the dang thing, and hold on tight!

And above all, from now on go on a low oxalate diet!  I would drop spinach entirely, along with rhubarb, beets, and raspberries- oxalate levels in each of these are off the charts.  Of course, I hope you are already off of wheat, since that is also high in this poison as well as gluten.  And step two?

Heal your gut!  A leaky gut opens you to every disease under the sun, so get to healing it.  Bone Broth is the best tool for this that there is, helping to sooth, heal, and finally seal your gut lining- this is really job #1 in both health maintenance and health restoration!  As Hippocrates said so long ago: “All health begins in the gut.”  And it turns out he was right.

Once again, the best web site I have found on oxalates and their dangers is this one:  Read through what she has to say, and take it to heart.  I have no affiliation with her whatsoever, but I recognize excellence and knowledge when I see and hear it, and Sally Norton has it.  Take her advice, along with mine, and heal thyself!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

I HATE Oxalates! PaleoJay's Smoothie Cafe podcast.

Evil Oxalates presented by a Hippie!

I’ll admit, this is a new one for me.  A new, and painful lesson, to be sure- I got a kidney stone!  

Now, of course I had heard of kidney stones- my little brother actually had one a few years back, and went through a really painful, expensive operation to get it removed.  ‘But not me’, I thought- ‘I am always healthy, never need to get treated for anything, and prize my health beyond measure!  To this end, I always drink a daily Green Smoothie, with coconut milk (good), spices (good), cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower (good), along with kefir, apple cider vinegar, ginger root, and berries- all of which are good.  

But I also put in either a big portion of raw spinach, or a beet and beet greens- sometimes both!  I’ve been doing this for years and years…

Most of us think that any dark green is very healthy, indeed- I know I did.  I grew up with Popeye the Sailorman, who is ‘strong to the finish- when he eats his spinach- he’s Popeye the sailor man’.  Well, just add Popeye, one of my childhood heroes, to the list of authority figures like M.D.’s and medical clinics, left-wing politicians and others who are and always have been wrong.  (However well-meaning.)  But, it does turn out that kale is relatively low in oxalates, as are mustard greens!

As I already knew, plants are chemical warfare masters, coming up with things like phytic acid and gluten and gliadin, (among other toxic chemicals) that are loaded into wheat so that we mammals don’t eat them or their babies.  After all, since plants can’t run away or fight, chemical toxins are their only defense, really.  This is why wheat is so awful for us, particularly modern wheat.  But it is also why spinach and many other plants are also bad, because they are loaded with a chemical called an oxalate.

Nuts, beans, and peanuts are oxalate bombs- eat sparingly, along with your dark chocolate- after all, these things are treats- desserts, really- not a main food group!  And of course, grains are horrible, high sources of oxalate poisons, best eliminated entirely if possible.  

Of course, I’d heard of oxalates- but I had never heard just how bad they really are, especially if you take in enough that your body cannot readily get rid of them- then, they form oxalate crystals, and unfortunately I eventually got one, right inside my right kidney.  It hurts something awful, too, but I’ve learned how to deal with that- I just keep completely hydrated, drinking mostly water, but also lemon water and cranberry juice- as long as I stay really hydrated, there is no pain.  I expect to pass the stone naturally- I will keep you posted.  

The bad thing is, oxalates also do lots of other damage- to your teeth, to your gut lining (oh no-just like wheat!), to your bones, making them week- and also contributes to all kinds of symptoms that we normally ascribe to aging, and so they are largely ignored as “natural”.  They are not!  Headaches, tendon and muscle pain, brain fog- the more I read, the more oxalates sound just like gluten- bad news all around!

I am going on a low oxalate diet.  After awhile, I can again include small portions of these foods, but for now I want my body to get rid of its stores of this poison.  Black pepper, potatoes, spinach and beet greens are bad- spinach is by far the worst- raw or cooked!

The goal should not be to eliminate oxalates completely, but to gradually lower them to less than 50 to 60 mg. per day.  Potato chips have 21 mg. per ounce- choose corn chips instead.  Rhubarb and raspberries are very high indeed, and are two of my favorites.  Or at least, they used to be!  Likewise black pepper- at least for now.  After awhile, up to 1 tsp. per day is OK- and really, who eats more than that?  Even the spices turmeric and circumin have oxalates, and I even found that cranberries are quite high- I guess that cranberry juice is out now!  Circumin supplements are particularly high…  Turmeric is similar to black pepper, in that no more than 1 tsp. per day- and again, who consumes more than that?

Meat and meat based products, along with most fruits are quite free of oxalates!  This includes dairy, and this is wonderful news indeed.  It appears that vegetarians and vegans are particularly prone to high oxalate diets, and this makes perfect sense.  I found a good authority in  She is an expert in oxalates and in low oxalate diet and its benefits.  I recommend her site highly.

Also, it is quite difficult to really get a handle on what foods are, really, high in oxalates I’ve found.  Many say one food is “really high”, but if you check out this chart, you can see that, if eaten occasionally rather than daily, they really are no problem.  For instance, a baked potato (by the way, never eat the skin!) is about 18 mg per 100 grams- this is ok, for instance, kept to a weekly basis.  All alcohol is pretty much fine, although the lists love to say they are “off limits- except of course for the hallowed red wine- which, of course, the ‘intellectuals’ putting together these lists can’t imagine living without!  Beer is really low too, though they list it as high risk.  

In addition, in order to bring my own condition to a speedy conclusion, I have ordered an herb tincture called Chanka Pedreo, which is widely recommend to help break down kidney stones.  Once again, I will do a personal N=1 experiment, and let you know my outcome. 

My own takeaway is that perhaps we need to go back to the rudiments of the original Paleo Diet, which recommended no potatoes, tomatoes, or other nightshades!  Once again, I shall keep you posted.  Good DAY!